Hearings ‘should not all be virtual’

By Douglas Shepherd

Doctors should be given the chance to continue with face-to-face disciplinary hearings in cases where a significant amount of evidence is contested, according to the Medical Defence Union (MDU). 

It made its views clear in a resp­onse to a review of what lessons healthcare professional regulators can learn from the pandemic. The report was written by the Prof­essional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.

Dr Matthew Lee, MDU professional services director, said the defence body backed the continued use of virtual Medical Pract­itioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) regulatory hearings in some cases. 

Virtual interim orders hearings and fitness-to-practise hearings where there is uncontested evidence can be more convenient and less stressful for those taking part.