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Research Papers

Here you will find papers about research we have commissioned or carried out. You can find research papers published by academics and regulators on Our Bookshelf in the research section of our website.

Sexual misconduct in health and social care: understanding types of abuse and perpetrators’ moral mindsets

Using analysed records in 232 fitness to practise cases where sexual misconduct was found proven by registrants of the GMC, HCPC and NMC - Professor Searle has reviewed the academic and research literature on the key theories and explanations for why this kind of misconduct occurs

From public hearings to consensual disposal - insights from the decision-making literature

As part of our ongoing work on regulatory reform, particularly of fitness to practise proceedings, we wanted to find out what the available literature on decision-making tells us about the potential risks/benefits to the public of decisions generally being taken in a more private context

The role of patients and service users in ensuring the safety of the care they receive

​Can patients be effective in maintaining their own safety? We wanted to explore further the role of patients and service users in ensuring the safety of the care they receive, so we commissioned this research to find out more

Telling patients the truth when something has gone wrong - how have professional regulators encouraged professionals to be candid to patients?

This paper sets out the progress professional regulators we oversee have made in embedding the professional duty of candour (being open and honest to a patient when something has gone wrong in their care) across the UK since 2014

Sexual behaviours between health and care practitioners: where does the boundary lie?

We have observed that regulators' fitness to practise panels may treat sexual misconduct between colleagues less seriously than when sexual boundaries with patients are overstepped. We believe this type of behaviour can have a negative impact on patient safety, so we commissioned research to get both public and professional perspectives on the subject

Professional identity and the regulator's role - an overview

Does the regulator create or validate professional identity? This paper draws together the conclusions of our two previous publications on the subject of professional identity and regulation

Categorisation of fitness to practise data

A description of UK health and care professional regulators’ categorisation of fitness to practise allegations

Bad Apples? Bad Barrels? Or bad cellars? Antecedents and processes of professional misconduct in UK health and care

By analysing thousands of fitness to practise decisions, this ground-breaking study provides insights into professional misconduct by health and care professionals

Research into professional identity and regulation

Research exploring practitioners’ views of the relationship of professional regulation to professional identity.

A typology of dishonesty - illustrations using the fitness to practise database

A Research paper proposing a typology of six kinds of dishonest act that can apply across professions using illustrations from the Authority's fitness to practise database

Where does the boundary lie?

Would you be willing to see a health practitioner who has overstepped a boundary with a colleague? Watch this short animation to find out what focus group participants thought about this question for our research on this subject.