QUEEN'S BENCH DIVISION
THE ADMINISTRATIVE COURT
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(Official Shorthand Writers to the Court)
MR T DE LA MARE (instructed by THE GENERAL MEDICAL COUNCIL) appeared on behalf of the DEFENDANT
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"Where an order has effect under any provision of this section, the court may-
(a) in the case of an interim suspension order, terminate the suspension;
(b) [is irrelevant for present purposes];
(c) in either case, substitute for the period specified in the order (or in the order extending it) some other period which could have been specified in the order when it was made (or in the order extending it),
and the decision of the court under any application under this subsection shall be final."
"The Committee has carefully considered all the evidence before it today and the submissions made including the determinations of the hearing of your case by the [PCC] on 3 November 2001 and 13 February 2003."
The latter being the date when the final sanction is imposed:
"In accordance with section 41A of the Medical Act 1983, as amended, the Interim Orders Committee is satisfied that it is necessary in the public interest to make an order suspending your registration for a period of 18 months with effect from today.
In reaching its decision, the Committee considers it necessary in the public interest to suspend your registration because of the serious allegations of manslaughter, theft, and committing an act which had a tendency to pervert the course of justice. Charges have been laid in respect of the above matters subsequent to the determinations of the PCC.
The Committee has taken account of the issue of proportionality and has balanced the need to protect the public interest and the maintenance of public confidence in the profession against the consequences of for you of the suspension of your registration. Whilst it notes that this has removed your ability to practice medicine it considers that there are no conditions which would adequately protect the public interest. It is therefore satisfied that the order of suspension is proportionate response.
In deciding on the period of 18 months the Committee has taken into account the uncertainty of the time to resolve all the issues in the case.
The order will be reviewed at a further meeting of the Committee to be held within 6 months."
The review that was referred to was one that is required under subsection (2) of section 41.
Section 47(3) of the Medical Act 1983 has been amended to take account of that unfairness. It provides:
"Suspension of the registration of a fully registered person by [a direction of the Committee on Professional Performance... or an interim order [under [section 41A]] above shall not terminate any appointment such as is mentioned in subsection (1) above, but the person suspended shall not perform the duties of such an appointment during the suspension."
The appointments referred to in subsection (1) include appointments in the naval, military or air services and indeed in any hospital or a prison.