EAT confirms that applications for interim relief should be heard in public
If you work at a senior level in the NHS as a specialist medical consultant or senior leader, or have an honorary contract with a research institution, or if you are a senior private healthcare professional, we have particular insight into the culture and issues that might impact upon your working life.
As highly regulated professionals often with international reputations built over many years, we understand how a disciplinary or capability investigation could have serious career ending and reputational consequences.
We have regularly acted against well known NHS Trusts, Universities, pharmaceutical and healthcare organisations in high profile and complex cases.
Medical Consultants and Clinical Academics
We have defended the reputations of numerous specialist medical consultants and clinical academics facing disciplinary allegations.
Most cases have resulted in a tailored negotiated exit to enable a smoother transition into a new role than it otherwise would have been. When in some cases this has led to dismissal we have successfully won hard fought litigation cases.
We have experience in the following areas:
-Clinical/Capability and Misconduct investigations under MHPS or disciplinary procedures
-NHS Whistleblowing processes and whistleblowing victimisation
-The impact of dysfunctional teams
-Job plan negotiations
Clinical/capability and misconduct investigations
Being subjected to an MHPS or disciplinary investigation for any reason will be an extremely worrying time clouded with uncertainty and the fear of being brought into disrepute.
In many cases the disciplinary procedure will be a contractual process under MHPS, or if you are a clinical academic, it will be underpinned by statute. We can help you understand how the procedure can be used as a sword and as a shield, and make relevant and powerful representations to help obtain the best outcome for you.
We would always ask you to seek the representation of your professional associations or trade unions first, such as the BMA, MPS or HSCA. Sometimes we can work alongside these associations, and in other cases we assist clients where the professional body will not do so.
The dynamics of individuals in close knit, high functioning teams can lead to breakdowns. In healthcare, this can be extremely destabilising to an individual’s career and health, and can affect patient care and safety.
Sometimes this breakdown can be pinned on the wrong person for innocent or nefarious reasons. If you are on the receiving end of the consequences of a conflict within a team, we will help you to navigate the situation with emotional intelligence and using a tailored strategy will extricate you with your professional reputation intact, or retain you within the environment if possible.
NHS Whistleblowing claims
We are whistleblowing experts. Whether you are considering blowing the whistle and wish to protect yourself, or you have already blown the whistle and are now facing retaliation such as exclusion, unfounded disciplinary/capability allegations, or dismissal, we can provide reassurance and guidance.
Whistleblowing in the NHS is not easy despite the apparent encouragement to do so. We recognise that most clinicians do not even recognise they are whistleblowers because they are simply raising concerns that ought to be raised, and are seeking to ensure any issues they raise are put right for the benefit of patient safety. There is therefore often no legitimate context as to why they find themselves facing retaliation with their careers at stake.
We have negotiated severance terms for many whistleblowers and have litigated successful claims against NHS Trusts where litigation (as the last resort) has been the only means to obtain compensation and redress.
Employment terms and conditions
We understand the complexity of consultant’s pay, terms & conditions, and working arrangements. We are able to advise on job plans, PAs, CEAs and private practice arrangements, and the rules in respect of these found in consultant’s terms and conditions of employment.
This expertise is important when considering the range of alternatives available when negotiating severance terms and when claiming high value awards arising from successful Employment Tribunal or High Court claims.
[Link to Weerasingheremedy judgment]