The Professional Standards Authority (the Authority) has decided to refer the case of Melanie Hayes to the High Court because we consider that the decision is insufficient to protect the public. This was a case concluded by way of a consensual panel determination – that is where the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) and the registrant provisionally agree a sanction which is then proposed to the panel. The panel considered the sanction proposed by the parties and the reasons given for reaching it and agreed that a sanction of six months’ suspension with review was appropriate.
After the hearing, the NMC wrote to the Authority setting out their concerns with the panel’s decision. They also shared letters from other bodies raising concerns about the sanction. As part of our process we considered these representations when reaching our own independent decision.
We will not be commenting further until the case is resolved.
Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care
Notes to the Editor
- The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care oversees 10 statutory bodies that regulate health and social care professionals in the UK.
- 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.
- We also set standards for organisations holding voluntary registers for health and social care occupations and accredit those that meet them.
- 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.
- 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.
- Our values are – integrity, transparency, respect, fairness and teamwork – and we strive to ensure that they are at the core of our work.
- More information about our work and the approach we take is available at www.professionalstandards.org.uk