Osteopaths

Hylton-Potts - London Based Law Firm Helping People Across the UK since 1999

If you are an osteopath and have a professional problem, we can help you.

Specialist Lawyer

Rodney Hylton-Potts is highly experienced in advising and helping osteopaths, and those who operate premises providing osteopathic services. He has a high success rate in obtaining the very best possible results for those involved in proceedings before The General Osteopathic Council

He fights for his clients. Call for a free consultation and advice in relation to any osteopathy matter. What have you got to lose?

Osteopaths-Consult the experts.

Call for a free consultation and advice in relation to any osteopathy matter. What have you got to lose?

We deal with primary care NHS applications.

Free Legal Helpline.

To learn more consult the experts – For more information or a free legal opinion telephone 020-7381-8111 or email law@hylton-potts.com

Help with Employer and Disciplinary Procedures

Complex procedures

This is a reminder of the complexity of the contractual disciplinary procedures that apply to employment and the potential legal consequences if they are not followed properly.

Sometimes employees are entitled to legal representation in disciplinary proceedings.

We can turn this to your advantage. You are not alone.

Free Legal Helpline.

To learn more consult the experts – For more information or a free legal opinion telephone 020-7381-8111 or email law@hylton-potts.com

Summary of the disciplinary and regulatory framework

Fitness to practice

It is the legal duty of the General Osteopathic Council (GOC) to set the standards of competence and conduct that are expected of osteopaths.   The GOC’s main responsibility is to protect the public and maintain public confidence in the profession and the osteopaths it regulates.

By fitness to practice it means that osteopaths should have the necessary knowledge and skills to perform their job effectively, they should have the health and character to practice safely and competently, and they can be trusted to act legally and responsibly.

The guidelines for the safe and competent practice of osteopathy are set out in two documents, the GOC’s Code of Practice, which came into effect in 2005, and Standard 2000 – Standard of Proficiency.

The GOC’s Regulation Department is responsible for establishing and maintaining the standards of professional competence and conduct.  It handles complaints about the fitness to practice of osteopaths on the Register, which can lead to a hearing before the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC).

The Fitness to Practicereports, published annually, include details of the decisions made by the PCC and any sanctions applied. When the committee investigates an allegation and decides that it is not well founded, the osteopath can ask for this to be recorded in the next Fitness to Practice report.
Hearings

The GOC’s Professional Conduct Committee hears all complaints that relate to professional incompetence, unacceptable professional conduct and criminal convictions.  The Committee is made up of two osteopaths and three people, including the chair, who are not osteopaths.  An experienced barrister or solicitor sits with the committee to advise them on legal matters, but is not involved in any decision-making. For more information about what happens at a hearing visit the GOC’s Attending a hearing page.

If your complaint is upheld, the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC) decides what action to take against the osteopath and what sanctions to apply. They can:

  • give an osteopath an admonishment which is recorded on their file and can be taken into account if a later complaint is made about them
  • impose conditions on how the osteopath works for a set period of time (for example, that they must develop particular areas of their practice and demonstrate that they meet the required standards of practice)
  • suspend the osteopath from the Register for a fixed period of time: an osteopath will not be able to practice as an osteopath during this period and may have to complete more training before being allowed to practice again
  • remove an osteopath from the Register, so that they will no longer be able to practice as an osteopath.

Findings

Within seven days after a hearing, the GOC aims to publish on the website the decision of the committee and details of any sanctions applied to an osteopath.   If the sanction applied is conditions of practice or suspension, this will be shown next to an osteopath’s name on the Register, for as long as the sanction applies.

The GOC’s Fitness to Practice report is published annually and also includes details of the decisions made by the Professional Conduct Committee and any sanctions applied.  When the committee investigates an allegation and finds that it is not well founded, an osteopath can ask for this to be recorded in the Fitness to Practice report.

The decisions are required to be published to ensure the GOC meets its legal obligations to publish information relating to the Professional Conduct Committee.

Interim suspension orders

These orders provide details of osteopaths whose registration has been suspended pending the investigation or hearing of a complaint.  Any practitioner who is subject to an Interim Suspension Order cannot call themselves an osteopath during the period of suspension.

Appeals

Decisions made by the Professional Conduct Committee can be appealed against. An appeal can be made by the osteopath concerned or the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE).

Osteopaths

The Osteopaths Act 1993 section 31 (as amended) provides for an osteopath to appeal against a decision of the Professional Conduct Committee.  An appeal may be made to one of the following courts:

  • High Court of Justice in England and Wales
  • Court of Session in Scotland
  • High Court of Justice in Northern Ireland.

Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence

The National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002, section 29, provides for the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE) to appeal against a decision reached by the Professional Conduct Committee if it considers it to have been unduly lenient and that an appeal would be in the public interest.

Legal representatives

An osteopath who is the subject of a complaint is entitled to legal representation at a hearing before the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC).

The leaflet Notice to Osteopaths and Legal Representatives contains information about the General Osteopathic Council’s Fitness to Practice (FTP) process for people involved in a PCC hearing.

It also includes details of the statutory time limits for the different stages of the proceedings, from when notice of the allegation is first received by the osteopath to when written witness statements and skeleton arguments must be submitted before the hearing

The GOC’s complaints process

Screening a complaint

When the GOC receives a completed complaints form, an independent osteopath carefully studies the complaint to make sure it is something the GOC can deal with.  The GOC aims to have cases screened within three weeks of receiving the complaint.  The GOC will contact the osteopath if any details need to be checked.

The independent osteopath will not reject a complaint without talking to a lay member (someone who is not an osteopath) of the General Osteopathic Council.

If the GOC  find that it can’t deal with your complaint, it will contact the complainant and tell them why.  It may be that the allegations do not amount to a breach of professional standards, because they are not relevant to the work of the osteopath, or because there is unlikely to be sufficient evidence to support the complaint.

Investigating a complaint

Once the GOC agree to investigate a complaint, it will usually contact the osteopath complained about, send them the details of the complaint and ask for a response.  The GOC might need to ask for information from other people as part of the investigation.   Then GOC will ask its Investigating Committee to look at all the information that has been collected.  It aims for the Investigating Committee to do this within four months of the complaint being received. This committee is made up of osteopaths and lay members (non-osteopaths) and chaired by a lay person.  The Committee may ask for more information from.

The committee will decide whether all the information collected supports the complaint and whether the allegations would amount to any of the following:

  • unacceptable professional conduct
  • professional incompetence
  • a criminal conviction in the UK that is relevant to the work of the osteopath
  • a medical condition that seriously affects the osteopath’s ability to practice.

If the Investigating Committee believes that the complaint does not indicate any of these, they will find that there is no case to answer and the complaint won’t be looked at any more.  The GOC will tell you why the committee made its decision.  But if the committee finds that there is a case to answer, the GOC will arrange a public hearing and instruct its solicitors to prepare the case against the osteopath.

Hearings

Professional Conduct Committee

If the complaint concerns an osteopath’s professional conduct or competence, or a criminal conviction that is relevant to his/her work, it will be heard by the Professional Conduct Committee.  The GOC aims to hold the hearing within nine months of it being referred by the Investigating Committee.

Health Committee

Complaints about an osteopath’s mental or physical health are passed to the Health Committee, which is made up of osteopaths and non-osteopaths and at least one registered medical practitioner.

This committee can look at cases without having a hearing.  It meets in private because it has to consider an osteopath’s medical condition.

If there are serious worries about the osteopath’s health, the committee may require the osteopath to meet certain conditions. It can also stop the osteopath from working for a set time by suspending their registration.

Specialist Lawyer

Consult the experts.

Call for a free consultation and advice – If you are an osteopath and have a professional problem, we can help you.

Specialist Lawyer

Rodney Hylton-Potts is highly experienced in advising and helping osteopaths, and those who operate premises providing osteopathic services. He has a high success rate in obtaining the very best possible results for those involved in proceedings before The General Osteopathic Council

He fights for his clients. Call for a free consultation and advice in relation to any osteopathy matter. What have you got to lose?

Osteopaths-Consult the experts.

Call for a free consultation and advice in relation to any osteopathy matter. What have you got to lose?

Free Legal Helpline.

To learn more consult the experts – For more information or a free legal opinion telephone 020-7381-8111 or email law@hylton-potts.com

Help with Employer and Disciplinary Procedures

Complex procedures

This is a reminder of the complexity of the contractual disciplinary procedures that apply to employment and the potential legal consequences if they are not followed properly.

Sometimes employees are entitled to legal representation in disciplinary proceedings.

We can turn this to your advantage. You are not alone.

Free Legal Helpline.

To learn more consult the experts – For more information or a free legal opinion telephone 020-7381-8111 or email law@hylton-potts.com

 

Homologation

This is the: granting of approval by an official authority, such as your professional body.

We can help have your degree or  qualification homologated to assist in the process of becoming registered

 

Summary of the disciplinary and regulatory framework

Fitness to practice

It is the legal duty of the General Osteopathic Council (GOC) to set the standards of competence and conduct that are expected of osteopaths.   The GOC’s main responsibility is to protect the public and maintain public confidence in the profession and the osteopaths it regulates.

By fitness to practice it means that osteopaths should have the necessary knowledge and skills to perform their job effectively, they should have the health and character to practice safely and competently, and they can be trusted to act legally and responsibly.

The guidelines for the safe and competent practice of osteopathy are set out in two documents, the GOC’s Code of Practice, which came into effect in 2005, and Standard 2000 – Standard of Proficiency.

The GOC’s Regulation Department is responsible for establishing and maintaining the standards of professional competence and conduct.  It handles complaints about the fitness to practice of osteopaths on the Register, which can lead to a hearing before the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC).

The Fitness to Practicereports, published annually, include details of the decisions made by the PCC and any sanctions applied. When the committee investigates an allegation and decides that it is not well founded, the osteopath can ask for this to be recorded in the next Fitness to Practice report.
Hearings

The GOC’s Professional Conduct Committee hears all complaints that relate to professional incompetence, unacceptable professional conduct and criminal convictions.  The Committee is made up of two osteopaths and three people, including the chair, who are not osteopaths.  An experienced barrister or solicitor sits with the committee to advise them on legal matters, but is not involved in any decision-making. For more information about what happens at a hearing visit the GOC’s Attending a hearing page.

If your complaint is upheld, the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC) decides what action to take against the osteopath and what sanctions to apply. They can:

  • give an osteopath an admonishment which is recorded on their file and can be taken into account if a later complaint is made about them
  • impose conditions on how the osteopath works for a set period of time (for example, that they must develop particular areas of their practice and demonstrate that they meet the required standards of practice)
  • suspend the osteopath from the Register for a fixed period of time: an osteopath will not be able to practice as an osteopath during this period and may have to complete more training before being allowed to practice again
  • remove an osteopath from the Register, so that they will no longer be able to practice as an osteopath.

Findings

Within seven days after a hearing, the GOC aims to publish on the website the decision of the committee and details of any sanctions applied to an osteopath.   If the sanction applied is conditions of practice or suspension, this will be shown next to an osteopath’s name on the Register, for as long as the sanction applies.

The GOC’s Fitness to Practice report is published annually and also includes details of the decisions made by the Professional Conduct Committee and any sanctions applied.  When the committee investigates an allegation and finds that it is not well founded, an osteopath can ask for this to be recorded in the Fitness to Practice report.

The decisions are required to be published to ensure the GOC meets its legal obligations to publish information relating to the Professional Conduct Committee.

Interim suspension orders

These orders provide details of osteopaths whose registration has been suspended pending the investigation or hearing of a complaint.  Any practitioner who is subject to an Interim Suspension Order cannot call themselves an osteopath during the period of suspension.

Appeals

Decisions made by the Professional Conduct Committee can be appealed against. An appeal can be made by the osteopath concerned or the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE).

Osteopaths

The Osteopaths Act 1993 section 31 (as amended) provides for an osteopath to appeal against a decision of the Professional Conduct Committee.  An appeal may be made to one of the following courts:

  • High Court of Justice in England and Wales
  • Court of Session in Scotland
  • High Court of Justice in Northern Ireland.

Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence

The National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002, section 29, provides for the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE) to appeal against a decision reached by the Professional Conduct Committee if it considers it to have been unduly lenient and that an appeal would be in the public interest.

Legal representatives

An osteopath who is the subject of a complaint is entitled to legal representation at a hearing before the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC).

The leaflet Notice to Osteopaths and Legal Representatives contains information about the General Osteopathic Council’s Fitness to Practice (FTP) process for people involved in a PCC hearing.

It also includes details of the statutory time limits for the different stages of the proceedings, from when notice of the allegation is first received by the osteopath to when written witness statements and skeleton arguments must be submitted before the hearing

The GOC’s complaints process

Screening a complaint

When the GOC receives a completed complaints form, an independent osteopath carefully studies the complaint to make sure it is something the GOC can deal with.  The GOC aims to have cases screened within three weeks of receiving the complaint.  The GOC will contact the osteopath if any details need to be checked.

The independent osteopath will not reject a complaint without talking to a lay member (someone who is not an osteopath) of the General Osteopathic Council.

If the GOC  find that it can’t deal with your complaint, it will contact the complainant and tell them why.  It may be that the allegations do not amount to a breach of professional standards, because they are not relevant to the work of the osteopath, or because there is unlikely to be sufficient evidence to support the complaint.

Investigating a complaint

Once the GOC agree to investigate a complaint, it will usually contact the osteopath complained about, send them the details of the complaint and ask for a response.  The GOC might need to ask for information from other people as part of the investigation.   Then GOC will ask its Investigating Committee to look at all the information that has been collected.  It aims for the Investigating Committee to do this within four months of the complaint being received. This committee is made up of osteopaths and lay members (non-osteopaths) and chaired by a lay person.  The Committee may ask for more information from.

The committee will decide whether all the information collected supports the complaint and whether the allegations would amount to any of the following:

  • unacceptable professional conduct
  • professional incompetence
  • a criminal conviction in the UK that is relevant to the work of the osteopath
  • a medical condition that seriously affects the osteopath’s ability to practice.

If the Investigating Committee believes that the complaint does not indicate any of these, they will find that there is no case to answer and the complaint won’t be looked at any more.  The GOC will tell you why the committee made its decision.  But if the committee finds that there is a case to answer, the GOC will arrange a public hearing and instruct its solicitors to prepare the case against the osteopath.

Hearings

Professional Conduct Committee

If the complaint concerns an osteopath’s professional conduct or competence, or a criminal conviction that is relevant to his/her work, it will be heard by the Professional Conduct Committee.  The GOC aims to hold the hearing within nine months of it being referred by the Investigating Committee.

Health Committee

Complaints about an osteopath’s mental or physical health are passed to the Health Committee, which is made up of osteopaths and non-osteopaths and at least one registered medical practitioner.

This committee can look at cases without having a hearing.  It meets in private because it has to consider an osteopath’s medical condition.

If there are serious worries about the osteopath’s health, the committee may require the osteopath to meet certain conditions. It can also stop the osteopath from working for a set time by suspending their registration.

Specialist Lawyer

Consult the experts.

Call for a free consultation and advice in relation to any osteopathy matter. What have you got to lose?

Free Legal Helpline.

To learn more consult the experts – For more information or a free legal opinion telephone 020-7381-8111 or email law@hylton-potts.com

Challenging Exam Results

A disappointing result/grade or failure is not the end of the road.  Expert advice and the law can help you.

Examining bodies have duties. We operate highly competitive fixed fees.

Contact us by phone or email for a free expert opinion.

We can help with the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE ) a clinical skill performance and competence in skills such as communication, clinical examination, medical procedures / prescription, exercise prescription, joint mobilisation / manipulation techniques, radiographic positioning, radiographic image evaluation and interpretation of results. If you feel that you have been wrongly marked, we can advise and draft presentations for £495 including VAT

Investigations

If your school, academy, college or workplace needs an independent investigation to assist you in getting at the facts, quickly inexpensively and in a no nonsense clear fashion look no further.

Consult the experts – for more information telephone 020- 7381- 8111 or email law@hylton-potts.com