§ 64. Dame Jill Knight
To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether he envisages any early change in the procedure to deal with alleged disciplinary misdemeanours by hospital doctors or consultants; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
NHS review working paper 7 "NHS Consultants: Appointments, Contracts and Distinction Awards" states the Government's intention to start negotiations with the profession on the basis of proposals contained in the report of the joint working party which examined hospital and community doctors' and dentists' disciplinary procedures. The report, which was completed last year, contains a number of useful recommendations including a new procedure for dealing with cases of professional misconduct and incompetence 573W which warrant disciplinary action short of dismissal and improvements both to existing disciplinary procedures and the system of appeals to me agailist dismissal. The working paper makes it clear that our aim is to introduce new arrangements by the end of the year at the latest.