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Research report: a typology of dishonesty

We have just published our latest research paper, looking at the subject of dishonesty. Using our database of fitness to practise cases, researchers Ann Gallagher (University of Surrey) and Robert Jago (Royal Holloway University of London) examined cases of professional misconduct that included an allegation of dishonesty, and propose a typology of six kinds of dishonest act that can apply across professions.

This research contributes to our ongoing programme of work to understand the impact of regulation and to develop strategies to prevent or reduce incidence of professional misconduct in future. It builds on the report we published last June into Attitudes to dishonest behaviour by health and care professionals. The report discusses the ethical and professional arguments relating to honesty and dishonesty.

This latest research involved analysis of 151 cases involving a charge of dishonesty and set out:

  • To identify the prevalence of particular acts of dishonesty in three categories
  • To see if any patterns emerged in relation to the environmental circumstances in which these acts of dishonesty were perpetrated
  • To identify any patterns related to dishonesty in particular health and care professions
  • To identify any patterns related to the personal circumstances of those committing dishonest acts
  • To consider whether the data can suggest future preventative interventions, regulatory or otherwise, of different dishonest acts across the categories.

 The full report is available on our website.


Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care


Christine Braithwaite


Reception: 020 7389 8030


Notes to the Editor

  1. Ann Gallagher is Professor of Ethics and Care at the International Care Ethics Observatory, School of Health Sciences at the University of Surrey. Robert Jago is a Senior Lecturer, School of Law at Royal Holloway University of London.
  2. The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care (previously known as the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence) oversees nine statutory bodies that regulate health and social care professionals in the UK.
  3. We assess their performance and report to Parliament. We also conduct audits and investigations and can appeal fitness to practise cases to the courts if we consider that sanctions are insufficient to protect the public and it is in the public interest.
  4. We also set standards for organisations holding voluntary registers for health and social care occupations and accredit those that meet them.
  5. We share good practice and knowledge, conduct research and introduce new ideas to our sector. We monitor policy developments in the UK and internationally and provide advice on issues relating to professional standards in health and social care.
  6. We do this to promote the health, safety and wellbeing of users of health and social care services and the public. We are an independent body, accountable to the UK Parliament.
  7. Our values are at the heart of who we are and what we do. We are committed to being impartial, fair, accessible and consistent in the application of our values.
  8. More information about our work and the approach we take is available at