In July 2014 we audited all 75 of the cases that the General Chiropractic Council (GCC) had closed at the initial stages of its fitness to practise (FTP) process during the 12 month period from 1 June 2013 to 30 May 2014.
We concluded that the GCC’s operation of its initial stages FTP process has not created any risks to public safety, and that in the majority of the cases, the Investigating Committee made appropriate decisions to close cases without a referral for a hearing.
However, during this audit we found weaknesses in all of the cases that we audited. The deficiencies we found in this audit related to failures across every aspect of the casework framework, as well as widespread failures to comply with the GCC’s own procedures, which we concluded raises concern about the extent to which the public can have confidence in the GCC’s operation of its initial stages FTP process.
Some of the weaknesses we identified are detailed below:
- Ineffective screening on receipt of ‘complaints’ and inconsistent completion and updating of risk assessments
- Poor record keeping and data protection breaches
- Customer service issues, including failing to respond to correspondence promptly and failing to provide updates about progress and outcomes within reasonable timeframes
- Inadequate investigation of cases through failures to gather relevant evidence or to do so promptly
- Deficiencies in the evaluation of information by decision-makers and weaknesses in the reasoning provided for decisions
You can access the report below.