Healthcare – presenting for the General Medical Council
Susanna practises exclusively in the field of Professional Discipline. She has significant experience in this area having presented cases for The General Medical Council since 2013 when she was appointed to a panel instructed to conduct Interim Order hearings.
Since then, Susanna has been instructed in Fitness to Practice hearings dealing with issues of:
- Professional performance
- Criminal Convictions
- Cases involving prescribing errors.
- Sexual Misconduct
- Use of Alcohol / Drugs
Susanna has additionally presented cases involving doctors’ applications for restoration, review hearings and hearings before the Investigation Committee.
In the last year, Susanna had been instructed in several complex and long-lasting cases. The case of Dr Vardhineni concerned the doctor’s involvement in a tutoring agency alleged to have been ‘coaching’ International Medical Graduates when preparing for the GMC’s PLAB 2 examinations. The case involved analysis of a considerable amount of evidence found on social media sites.
She is also instructed in an ongoing case, which commenced in September 2021 concerning the duties of a doctor practising in assistance medicine and making decisions regarding repatriation.
GMC v Sastry  EWCA Civ 623; Appeared before MPTS in case relating to unsuccessful stem cell transplant performed in India. Involved cross-examining haemato-oncologists from England and India regarding decision to carry out stem cell transplant in circumstances which did not accord with European Bone Marrow Transplant Guidelines. Dr Sastry was erased from the medical register at the conclusion of the MPTS proceedings, a decision which was subsequently upheld by both the High Court and the Court of Appeal.
GMC v Dr AB (2021-23) Proceedings brought against doctor working in field of assistance medicine for travel insurer in relation to 3 cases where repatriation of patients from Ethiopia, Turkey and Lanzarote was not carried out and patients subsequently died. Significant challenge raised by doctor on MPTS’s power to regulate doctors practising in assistance medicine. Experts relied upon by GMC also subject to challenge where expertise derived from military rather than commercial experience. Wording of allegations and scope of doctor’s duties in relation to communication also disputed under rule 17(2)(g) of Fitness to Practise Rules. Doctor’s case currently part heard.
GMC v Vardhineni (2022) FTP proceedings brought against doctor who had obtained confidential GMC information regarding PLAB 2 examinations. Dr Vardhineni used information to give students at the Aspire agency an unfair advantage when undertaking the examinations.
Dr Vardhineni claimed a limited role at the agency, however, during the hearing his role was proven to be much more involved. Voluminous material obtained from social media sites used to discredit Dr Vardhineni’s account in relation to knowledge regarding his management of agency, his teaching methods and even the independence of those witnesses who had provided testimonials for him. Hearing resulted in Dr Vardhineni’s erasure.
GMC v Dabibi (2022) FTP Proceedings brought against doctor relating to dishonesty in respect of working in breach of Covid regulations.
GMC v Tahery, 2020-1: FTP proceedings brought against cosmetic plastic surgeon in relation to a number of rhinoplasties alleged to have been performed below the requisite standard and doctor’s response to patient complaints. Legal argument as to GMC’s use of NHS plastic surgeon who performed largely functional rhinoplasties. Expert evidence accepted. Doctor erased from medical register.