Judge Hooper Report related PILOT study outcome

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, General Medical Council should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

Dear General Medical Council,

The handling by the General Medical Council of cases involving whistle-blowers (following GMC bad practice identified in the Employment Tribunal), related internal report was made by the Right Honourable Sir Anthony Hooper to the General Medical Council 2015. A pilot study was subsequently conducted by the GMC, rather than implementing the recommendations, there was concern of lip service. The GMC have been guarded about the outcome of this pilot study in various FOI requests 2018. Some FTP complainants / (ir)Responsible Officers clearly found ways of circumventing the recommendations in the pilot phase by not signing FTP complaints &/or submitting by proxy - which has been used by the GMC as a defence of such complainants at its MPTS. Whilst on behalf of such vexatious complainants, the GMC continues FTP actions against whistle-blowers with ever more questionable investigations (like non-medical work enquiry complaint) that clearly do not engage all limbs of the statutory function of the GMC. There continues to be no real actions against vexatious complainants but lip service and extra support/questionable GMC liaison (backdoor) service insight giving.

Now in 2022, under FOIA, can the final report of the Judge Hooper report related pilot study, be released on ground of public interest. As a paying doctor funding the GMC, you have used our monies and on behalf of the profession, we would like to see what you have done, openly.

Yours faithfully,

Dr Ali
Former Elected Doctors Representative, Health Education England West Midlands

FOI, General Medical Council

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FOI, General Medical Council

1 Attachment

Dear Dr Ali

 

Your information request – IR1-3317673852

 

Thank you for your email dated 11 January 2022.

 

How we will consider your request

We’re going to consider your request under the Freedom of Information Act
2000 (FOIA). The FOIA gives us 20 working days to respond, but we’ll come
back to you as soon as we can.

 

Who to contact

Louise Gormley will be handling your request. If you have any questions,
you can call her on 0161 923 6311 or email her at
[1][email address].

 

Kind regards,

 

Charlotte Adams
Information Access Team Assistant
General Medical Council
3 Hardman Street, Manchester M3 3AW

 

Email: [2][email address]

Website: [3]www.gmc-uk.org

Telephone: 0161 240 8125

 

Working hours: 8am to 2.30pm, Monday to Friday

 

[4][IMG]

 

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Louise Gormley, General Medical Council

Our reference: IR1-3317673852

 

Dear Dr Ali

 

Thank you for your request dated 11 January 2022.

 

I consider that the following FOIA exemption applies to the release of the
information you seek:

 

Section 14(1)  - Vexatious or repeated requests -  This exemption provides
that a public authority is not obliged to comply with a request for
information if the request is vexatious. I should stress that this is a
judgment on your request and not on you as a requestor.

 

The Information Commissioner has published guidance on vexatious requests
and we have concluded that your request satisfies several of the ICO’s
criteria.

 

Your right to appeal

 

You can appeal against my decision to the Information Access Manager. If
you would like to do so, please set out why you think the decision is
incorrect in an email and send it to [1][GMC request email]

 

You can also appeal to the Information Commissioner, the regulator of the
FOIA – we can provide more details about this if you need them.

 

Kind regards

 

Louise

 

Louise Gormley

Information Access Officer
Resources Directorate
 
Direct Line: 0161 923 6311
Email:        [2][email address]
Website:    [3]www.gmc-uk.org
Address:    Information Access Team
                 General Medical Council
                 3 Hardman Street

                 Manchester

                 M3 3AW

 

Working with doctors Working for patients

The General Medical Council helps to protect patients and improve medical
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Dear General Medical Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews, please forward as needed.

I am writing to request an internal review of General Medical Council's handling of my FOI request 'Judge Hooper Report related PILOT study outcome'. The ICO guidelines are that the ‘FOI service’ is applicant blind, Exemption 14(1) can only be applied to the request itself, rather than the consequences of releasing the requested information.

I understand the ICO have noted your departments other refusals on similar ground which given responses does appear related, I will ask them to add this. I would point out the GMC have received a High Court Notice. Correspondence and submissions to the GMC clearly references the 2015 Judge Hooper report into related similar failings of the GMC. I have chosen not to make it as a Subject Access Request as you have not clarified if that applies which is awkward, but make the request as a Freedom of Information Act Request. It is thus reasonable for me to make this request.

While my request is one of several and you state it is the request and not me, I challenge any assessment that my activity is vexatious. I assure you that my request for related information, was not intended to be vexatious and you already know I do plan to use the information.

I do not consider this request itself meets Section 14. It contains factual auditable information which you can cross reference and action, or start ironically another new vexatious FTP investigation into a non-medical matter of an FOIA request.

Although similar refused requests were made by other third-parties years ago, several years have passed. There is a clear public interest in the outcome. Concerns have been raised of similar refusals where judgements have since been found against the GMC by the ICO. Continuing this trend would raise further concerns.

You have provided no suggestions to assist with getting the request processed.

Empathising, it appears the request irritates your department but ICO guidelines do highlight there may be a certain level of irritation. I note the other correspondence with the ICO. Thus, it is not a disproportionate or unjustified level of disruption, disproportionate irritation or distress to provide, or 'place an unreasonable burden.'

I hope you can agree, it is not trivial or frivolous information I seek, which is highlighted by the nature of the request. It does not require a significant amount of work to provide a report for work already done. I would like to ask you to reassess my request in light of the fact that the information I have requested would have a serious purpose and value (as per the ICO guidance at https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio...).

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/j...

Yours faithfully,

Dr Ali
Former Elected Doctors Representative, Health Education England West Midlands

FOI, General Medical Council

1 Attachment

Dear Dr Ali

 

Thank you for your email dated 19 January 2022.

We will be considering your email as a Freedom of Information Act 2000
(FOIA) appeal. We have a target response time of 20 working days. We will
endeavour to respond to you within this timeframe.

 

Elizabeth Hiley will be handling your request. If you have any questions,
you can call her on 0161 923 6314 or email her at
[1][email address].

 

Kind regards,

 

Charlotte Adams
Information Access Team Assistant
General Medical Council
3 Hardman Street, Manchester M3 3AW

 

Email: [2][email address]

Website: [3]www.gmc-uk.org

Telephone: 0161 240 8125

 

Working hours: 8am to 2.30pm, Monday to Friday

 

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Julian Graves, General Medical Council

1 Attachment

Dear Dr Ali

 

Further to your appeal below please find attached my response.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Julian Graves

 

 

Julian Graves

Information Access Manager

General Medical Council

3 Hardman Street

Manchester M3 3AW

 

Tel. no: 0161 923 6351

Email: [1][email address]

 

 

 

 

 

 

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7th January 2022

Dear Mr Graves,

Thank you for your cut and paste generic response 7th January 2022. Please can you escalate this to your senior, to actually read and may be respond with the information as it is still needed for the related GMC FTP Investigation defense. In brief I would highlight:

• Unfounded accusations – There are no accusations just statements of fact justifying my particular request. This is from having participated in the related quasi-legal process - which also potentially means I am a data subject for this pilot study when I raised concerns of/to Prof. Smith’s HEE anti-whistleblowing policy in 2014 before GMC difficulties which he has omitted.
• Frequent or overlapping requests – The information was needed for a high court appeal. If your colleagues can stop starting new FTP investigations before the previous ones (pleural) finishes, I would also send fewer requests for information needed to justify a defense. In this context this argument is silly.
• No obvious intent to obtain information – There is both an obvious intent to obtain information and very specific information hence the request and to obviously use in a high court appeal, I would prefer the information but given refusals your GMC legal colleagues can confirm your expected vexatious refusal has been submitted as evidence to the high court.

It may be time for you to take a step back and look at the overall situation, this is a legitimate request, your response shows you are not refusing the request itself but the author of the request. Please consider this before further similar vexatious responses - in anticipation I had deliberately used that word in the request - similarly I highlight the public interest in relation to subsequent refusals your organisation may fixate on. I strongly recommend doctors whom pay your wages to make requests to obtain information they can then use to defend themselves, as I am doing.

This matter has been raised with the Information Commissioners Office but there will be an understandable delay to allow the high court process to complete - where responses to this request illustrate bad practices and an GMC organisation unfit for purpose or for justice. Whilst this is happening, as I feel your organisation can improve if properly stimulated, I demand you escalate this case to the CEO, Assistant Registrar or at least to your senior.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Ali

Julian Graves, General Medical Council

I am out of the office until 8 February 2022 and will have no email
access. In my absence please email: [GMC request email]  

Julian Graves, General Medical Council

Dear Dr Ali

I am in receipt of your email below.

As I have mentioned previously the correct statutory escalation route for FOI refusals is the Information Commissioner's Office. On that basis I will not be escalating your email to my line manager or other GMC staff. The arguments you make against the use of the S.14 exemption can obviously be made to the Information Commissioners Office if you haven't already done so.

Yours sincerely

Julian Graves

Julian Graves
Information Access Manager
General Medical Council
3 Hardman Street
Manchester M3 3AW

Tel. no: 0161 923 6351
Email: [email address]

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Dear General Medical Council and Mr Graves,

Thank you for your email 9th February 2022, I had asked for you/Mr Graves to escalate to your senior, Assistant Registrar or CEO Mr Charlie Massey. I was not asking you to use your discretion and do nothing.

You acknowledge this, the reasoning and other matters of bad practice at the GMC have been escalated to the Information Commissioners Office. You fail to realise that both good and fit for purpose organisations would attempt to resolve reasonable situations when they clearly can, rather than being depending on an external body - which seems to be the GMC default with the High Court and GMC bad practice in general. I am aware of your organisation’s lack of insight from a previous request. So, this does mean you should not act outside of your remit. Please escalate to Mr Massey.

As there are plans for much needed imposed reforms of the unfit for purpose GMC via statute, I plan to highlight this to MPs and then the Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman. You may wish to consider self-improvement before your next workplace appraisal, if you do please write a reflection and consider https://www.ombudsman.org.uk/organisatio... - Do not worry, the Ombudsman is not like the GMC to misuse a reflection.

Yours faithfully,

Dr Ali

S. Ali left an annotation ()

GMC reference: IR1-3317673852

Dear General Medical Council CEO Mr Chalie Massey or new chairperson,

RE: Judge Hooper report related pilot study, IR1-3317673852; IMMEDIATE RESPONSE NEEDED

On 11th January 2022 I requested a FOIA request for the final report of the Judge Hooper report related pilot study, be released on ground of public interest. The original report that has been quoted by both the GMC and myself in GMC discriminatory FTP litigation and misuse. Due to expected vexatious refusal by the GMC Information directorate, this case has been escalated to you with difficulty, whilst also being used in the High Court. Given parallel multiple GMC investigations and actions designed to harass whistleblowers and force upon health problems (?system design for suicide), I note you have characteristically not responded. Please provide a reply or provide the information requested, otherwise it will continue to be used to highlight your organisation is unfit for purpose, and the charity status needs to be removed.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Ali

FOI, General Medical Council

Thank you for getting in touch. Please note this is an automated email.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can with a further acknowledgement.
You’ll usually hear from us on the next working day, but it might take a
little longer during busy periods.

In the meantime, if you want any further information about the GMC, please
visit our website.

Thank you

Information Access team

General Medical Council

Email: [GMC request email]

Dear General Medical Council CEO Mr Charlie Massey or replacement,

RE: Judge Hooper report related pilot study, IR1-3317673852; IMMEDIATE RESPONSE NEEDED

I am still awaiting a response for this very reasonable 'and clearly not vexatious' request made in the Public Interest and the interest of doctors that pay your salary. Mr Massey a response would be appreciated.

As you know, this request string has been included as evidence to the high court. Although information was sought the responses highlight but not limited to, to genuine GMC bad practice responses to whistleblowing (which will include your non-response) and demonstrate the related frequency of GMC bad practices with Mr Graves name identified by courts, his involvement with other refusals and illegal/deceitful nature of his communication here. I note your legal colleagues are actively obstructing the ongoing High Court Case hearing, now by 5 months, the underhanded GMC tactic only demonstrates bad practice of the GMC with a lack of integrity, honesty and transparency. It would be negligent in your position to continue to delay a response and blame others as you have no control of your privately funded organisation.

Yours faithfully,

Dr Ali

FOI, General Medical Council

Thank you for getting in touch. Please note this is an automated email.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can with a further acknowledgement.
You’ll usually hear from us on the next working day, but it might take a
little longer during busy periods.

In the meantime, if you want any further information about the GMC, please
visit our website.

Thank you

Information Access team

General Medical Council

Email: [GMC request email]

Dear General Medical Council,

RE: Judge Hooper report related pilot study, IR1-3317673852

It appears you have been naughty. Having spoken with Mr Massey about this request on Tuesday 28th June, it appears he has not had this lawful demand escalated to him. It does appear he is inclined to provide the information despite that it is embarrassing information for your organisation but that is a Northern, promise-like interpretation. I would appreciate for the sake of transparency you do not redact information unless it is genuinely in keeping with Caldicott Principles or the law.

Although I am hopeful information will now be provided, I am fully aware your organisation will want to prevent whistleblowing doctors defending themselves in particular if it highlights deep ingrained GMC and MPTS prejudice, collusion (regulatory capture) and bad practices within your private organisation that is somehow also a charity.

Yours faithfully,

Dr Ali