Dear General Medical Council,

How many staff in the past 12 months at South London Healthcare trust have been reported to GMC

How many consultants were reported from Orthopaedics department by the trust to GMC

How many consultants were reported from Cardiology department by the trust to GMC

How many people were reported from the gynaecology department. to GMC

How many times has Roger Smith Gynaecologist been reported to the GMC

How many times is someone reported to the GMC before GMC act

Does the consultants position within the trust make a difference to how many grievances and concerns are reported before GMC act

Yours faithfully,

Patient Action Group

FOI, General Medical Council

Dear Helen

Information request - F13/5269/ME

Thank you for your email of 19 February 2013 asking for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).

We will consider your request and give you the information as soon as we can, normally within the 20 working-day limit set by the FOIA.

Please note that there may be some information which we cannot release to you under the FOIA. If this is the case, we will let you know why and state the relevant exemptions given in the FOIA. We will also give you information about how to appeal our decision.

I have allocated your request to Mark Ellen. If you have any questions, please contact him on 0161 923 6347 or email [email address].

Yours sincerely

Sarah Leigh
Information Access Officer
[email address]
0161 923 6398

General Medical Council
3 Hardman Street
M3 3AW

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Mark Ellen (0161 923 6347), General Medical Council

Dear Helen


Ref: IAT/ME/F13/5269


Thank you for your e-mail of 19 February 2013 in which you ask for
information about the number of staff at the South London Healthcare NHS
Trust who have been reported to the GMC in the past 12 months.


I have now had the opportunity to consider your request under the
provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA). I can confirm
that between 1 March 2012 and 28 February 2013 the GMC received complaints
about 35 doctors at this Trust. 


You have also asked for the number of complaints that we have received
about consultants in the Orthopaedics Department and the Cardiology
Department, as well as complaints made against staff in the Obstetrics and
Gynaecology Department and complaints made about Dr Roger Smith. I
consider that an exemption set out in the FOIA applies to these queries.
The exemption that applies is: 


Section 40(5)(b)(i) of the FOIA - This exemption states that the duty to
confirm or deny whether information is held does not arise if to do so
would breach any of the principles of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA). 
We believe that to publicly confirm or deny whether or not the information
requested is held would breach the first principle of the DPA, which
requires that the processing of personal data is fair and lawful. We
consider that the conditions in Schedule 2 of the DPA, relating to the
processing of personal data, are not met and therefore the release of the
information you have requested would be unlawful.


I must explain that you have the right of appeal against my refusal to
supply some of the  information that you have asked for under the FOIA. If
you wish to appeal please set out your grounds in writing and e-mail:
 Julian Graves, Information Access Manager at  [1][email address].
 Alternatively, you can write to Mr Graves at the Manchester address given
at the foot of this e-mail. 


If such an appeal were unsuccessful you have the right of a further appeal
to the Information Commissioner, the independent regulator of the FOIA and
DPA. If appropriate Mr Graves will provide the relevant details to you.


Finally, you have also asked about the number of times that someone has to
be reported before the GMC take action and you query whether a
Consultant's position within a Trust makes any difference to the process. 


I can confirm that the number of complaints against a doctor does not of
itself determine whether our fitness to practise procedures are engaged.
We assess whether a single complaint, or a pattern of complaints in
combination,  are sufficiently serious to call into question the continued
unrestricted registration of the medical practitioner. It is therefore the
seriousness of the issues raised rather than their volume that determines
whether we should investigate. A consultant's position within a Trust has
no bearing on our consideration of a complaint. 



Yours faithfully

Mark Ellen



Mark Ellen

Information Access Team

General Medical Council

3 Hardman Street

Manchester  M3 3AW

Direct Line: 0161 923 6347


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General Medical Council

3 Hardman Street, Manchester, M3 3AW

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Dear Mark Ellen (0161 923 6347),

So are you stating that Roger Smith reported 35 members of staff in a 12 month period!!!

Yours sincerely,


Mark Ellen (0161 923 6347), General Medical Council

Just to confirm: My response does not state that Dr Smith reported 35 members of staff.
I am simply confirming that we received complaints about 35 doctors at the Trust over a 12 month period.

My response also sets out the FOIA exemption that I consider applies to the other strands of your request - including your query about how many complaints we have received about Dr Smith.

I hope that this clarifies my response.

Yours faithfully
Mark Ellen

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