GMC investigations – what to do if I am being investigated by the GMC
Saunders Law has a vast amount of experience representing medical professionals who are faced with difficulties and subjected to investigation by their professional body. Medical professionals will know, the General Medical Council - the GMC - are responsible for regulating doctors within the UK, the GMC mandate and its purpose is embedded in the Medical Act 1983.
It is paramount doctors promote and maintain the health and safety of the public. The purpose of the GMC is to ensure that doctors maintain this public expectation. The GMC provides clear guidelines which doctors should adhere to, the four pillars to ensure good medical practice are:
- Knowledge skills and performance
- Maintaining trust
- Safety and quality
- Communication, partnership, and teamwork
Who does the GMC apply to?
The GMC applies to all doctors in the UK; this duty extends to medical students, as the GMC are responsible for registering doctors. Therefore, it is imperative medical students maintain a high standard of behaviour at all times. Failure to do so, can result in your registration being declined.
What happens if you fall below the standards required?
All doctors are required to adhere to the GMC guidelines, if you fall below the required standards the GMC can put you under investigation to determine your fitness to practice. Following the investigation, the GMC may impose sanctions, the GMC can exercise the following powers:
- Hand out warnings
- Agree to undertakings
- Refer the matter to the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS)
If your matter is escalated to the MPTS depending on the seriousness and the nature of the offence the MPTS has the power to: restrict, suspend, or strike a doctor off from practicing medicine.
What should I do if I am under investigation by the GMC?
It is important to respond to any complaints made by the GMC by providing written submissions, and any information that has been requested. Failure to comply will not resolve the issue, it will escalate the matter further and can result in your licence being revoked as a direct result of failing to comply with the requirements of the GMC.
How can we help
These investigations can cause untold damage to the reputation of a doctor or a medical practice; they are unwelcome and stressful.
Saunders Law has a wealth of experience representing medical professionals, if your registration is at stake, it can be helpful to instruct a solicitor to ensure the matter is analysed at every angle in an attempt to mitigate the investigation escalating further. We can advise clients how to respond to investigations as well as provide representation at hearings.
Saunders Law successfully represented a consultant who was accused of assault and risked losing his licence to practice medicine. The consultant was being investigated by their local NHS Foundation Trust. Saunders Law alongside top tier counsel successfully represented client M at the hearing. Client M received a positive outcome as the panel decided there will be no formal sanction. Client M leaves the following review:
Thanks to you and your team. The day I spoke to you I knew you were the right man for the job, who could clear me from these allegations.
I am indebted to you and wouldn’t have wished any better person than you.
Well done you and your team!
Saunders Law are dedicated to representing medical professionals who are facing investigation by their local NHS foundation Trust or the GMC.
If you are being investigated or need representation at a hearing, please contact our Regulatory department on +44(0)207 632 4300, or fill in our online enquiry form and we would be happy to discuss your matter with you.