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Authority appeals Medical Practitioners Tribunal decision in the case of Michael Watt

The Professional Standards Authority has filed an appeal against the decision of the Medical Practitioners Tribunal of the General Medical Council (‘the Tribunal’) granting voluntary erasure to Dr Michael Watt.  

The Authority has referred the matter to the High Court of Justice in Northern Ireland due to its concern that the decision was not sufficient to protect the public. The Authority is concerned that the decision of the Tribunal erred in failing to give sufficient weight to the public interest in this case being considered at a fitness to practise hearing and that there were procedural errors in the panel’s approach.  

Accordingly, the Authority is asking the Court to quash the decision allowing voluntary erasure and replace it with an order refusing voluntary erasure. Information about the Authority’s power to appeal decisions made by regulatory bodies can be found on our website.

The Authority asks members of the press and public to respect the privacy of Dr Watt and the patients and families involved in all connected matters whilst these proceedings are ongoing. In accordance with its usual practice, the Authority will not be providing any further comment on the proceedings during this time.

ENDS

Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care

Contact: media@professionalstandards.org.uk


Notes to the Editor

  1. The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care oversees 10 statutory bodies that regulate health and social care professionals in the UK.
  2. 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.
  3. We also set standards for organisations holding voluntary registers for health and social care occupations and accredit those that meet them.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. Our values are – integrity, transparency, respect, fairness and teamwork – and we strive to ensure that they are at the core of our work.
  7. More information about our work and the approach we take is available at www.professionalstandards.org.uk