Mrs Vrushali Rajnish Jiyaviya

Profession: Social worker

Registration Number: SW51702

Hearing Type: Final Hearing

Date and Time of hearing: 10:00 26/11/2018 End: 17:00 30/11/2018

Location: Health and Care Professions Tribunal Service (HCPTS), 405 Kennington Road, London, SE11 4PT

Panel: Conduct and Competence Committee
Outcome: No further action

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Allegation

While registered as a social worker with the Health and Care Professions Council, you:
1. In January or February 2014, submitted an application for employment as an Inclusion Support Worker with Leicestershire County Council and you;
a) did not include information detailing your employment with Nottinghamshire County Council between May and October 2013;
b) did not declare your registration with the Health and Care Professions Council.

2. In relation to Service User A:
a) on or around 26 March 2016, contacted the GP of Service User A by telephone and requested that confidential information regarding Service User A's mental health be shared with you;
b) did so without the informed consent of the Service User;
c) on 05 May 2016, recorded five case notes retrospectively in relation to contacts which took place between 21 and 30 March 2016;

3. In relation to Service User B:
a) did not record contact with Service User B over a period of seven weeks between 18 March 2016 and 5 May 2016.
 

4. In relation to Service User D:
a) did not undertake and/or record a planned visit on 15 April 2016;
b) did not undertake and/or record any contact with the Service User D over a period of three weeks between 15 April and 3 May 2016.

5. In relation to Service User E did not undertake and/or record any contact with Service User E over a period of three weeks between 13 April 2016 and 5 May 2016.

6. In relation to Service User F:
a) did not undertake and/or record a planned visit on 26 April 2016
b) did not maintain and/or record a sufficient amount of contact whilst allocated the case.

7. In relation to Service User G:
a) did not undertake and/or record a planned visit on 25 April 2016;
b) did not record a visit undertaken on 31 March 2016.
c) did not maintain and/or record a sufficient amount of contact whilst allocated the case

8. In relation to Service User H:
a) did not undertake and/or record a planned visit on 3 February 2016;
b) did not record any contact with Service User H between 16 March 2016 to 29 April 2016.

9. The matters set out in particulars 1 were dishonest.

10. The matters set out in particulars 1 and 10 constitute misconduct.

11. The matters set out in particulars 3- 9 constitute misconduct and/or lack of competence.

12. By reason of your misconduct and/or lack of competence your fitness to practise is impaired.

Finding

Preliminary matters
1. The final hearing of the HCPC’s allegations against the Registrant, Mrs Vrushali Jiyaviya, was originally listed for two days, 31 May 2018 and 1 June 2018. This allocation was insufficient for the case to be concluded and so it was adjourned for a further five days, namely the week commencing Monday 26 November 2018.

2. At the commencement of the hearing, an application was made on behalf of the HCPC that the factual Particulars should be amended.  In addition to some amendments to correct dates on which it was alleged events had occurred, the HCPC sought to withdraw a contention that the Registrant had failed to report to Leicestershire County Council (LCC) the fact that she was made the subject of a Caution Order on 4 December 2014 as a result of a finding made by the Conduct and Competence Committee of the HCPC in an unrelated case.  The basis upon which the HCPC wished to withdraw this contention was that there was no factual basis for alleging that the Registrant had been under a duty to make disclosure of the Caution Order. The Panel agreed that there was no reasonable prospect of this contention being established. No objection was made on behalf of the Registrant to any of the proposed amendments, and the Panel acceded to the application. The Allegation as it appears at the head of this document is in the form as amended, with appropriate re-numbering of paragraphs.

3. After the Particulars were amended, the Registrant was given an opportunity to respond to them. On behalf of the Registrant, Mr Anastasiades indicated as follows:
• Particulars 1(a) & 1(b) were accepted.
• Particular 2, it was accepted that there had been contact with the GP (Particular 2(a)), but it was the Registrant’s case that she did so with the consent of Service User A (Particular 2(b)).
• Particular 3, the period without contact alleged was accepted, but the Panel was told that the Registrant would advance an explanation for why there had been none.
• Particular 4, both limbs of this Particular were accepted, but it was contended that there was an explanation connected to the hospitalisation of Service User D.
• Particular 5, it was accepted that there had been no contact, but it was contended that the Registrant had tried to make contact, and she was suspended before a planned visit could take place.
• Particular 6, it was contended that the Registrant did undertake the visit, but accepted that she did not record it, her ill health explaining the failure to record.
• Particular 7, in relation to Service User G, the Registrant accepted that she did not attend on 25 April 2016 (Particular 7(a)), did not record the visit on 31 March 2016 (Particular 7(b)), and, while accepting that the record ought to have been better, contended that there was a sufficient amount of contact (Particular 7(c)).
• Particular 8, it was contended that the Registrant did visit Service User H on 3 February 2016 (Particular 8(a)), but accepted that she did not, but should have, recorded the visit.  So far as Particular 8(b) was concerned, it was said that between 16 March and 29 April 2016 all the visits had been completed, and no further contact was required.
• Particular 9, it was denied that the matters alleged in Particular 1 relating to the application for employment were dishonest.
• Misconduct, lack of competence and current impairment of fitness to practise were denied.

4. It was the HCPC’s original intention to rely on the evidence of a single witness, Ms ME.  Ms ME gave evidence on the first day of the hearing, 31 May 2018. During the course of the second day of the hearing, 1 June 2018, the Presenting Officer informed the Panel that he had heard from Ms ME, who had been asked by the Panel to obtain documents referred to in the course of her evidence.  As it was clear that the case would not be completed within the original time allocation in any event, it was agreed between the Presenting Officer and Mr Anastasiades, the Registrant’s representative, that the Panel would be assisted at the resumed hearing by hearing evidence from a further witness, namely Ms DS, the Registrant’s former line manager.  Accordingly, on 31 May 2018, the hearing was adjourned with directions to facilitate the reception of this, and further relevant, evidence.

Background
5. The HCPC’s case against the Registrant concerns her work for LCC as an Inclusion Support Worker.  She was employed in that role from 1 April 2014 until 26 September 2016, although she was suspended from 6 May 2016 until the termination of her employment.

6. The Registrant had previously been employed as a Social Worker by Nottinghamshire County Council (“NCC”) between May and October 2013.  Concerns about the Registrant’s practice in the NCC role resulted in a referral to the HCPC. In December 2014, after the Registrant commenced her work with LCC, there was a hearing before the Conduct and Competence Committee that resulted in a finding against the Registrant.

7. When, in early 2014, the Registrant applied for the Inclusion Support Worker post with LCC, she completed an online application. Two elements of that application form are relevant to Particular 1 of the Allegation currently being considered by the Panel.  One was the section headed, “Present/Most Recent Employment”.  In this section of the form the Registrant wrote that her most recent employment had been as an Agency Social Worker with Doncaster County Council.  The other aspect of the application that is relevant is that headed, “Membership of Relevant Organisations”. In this section of the form the Registrant did not disclose her HCPC registration.  It is the HCPC’s case that the failures to disclose the employment with NCC and HCPC registration were deliberate, and by Particular 9 they are said to have been dishonest.

8. The role of Inclusion Support Worker involved working with adults who had mental health difficulties, supporting them to be re-abled with a primary focus on social inclusion. Inclusion Support Workers were expected to work with service users on a one-to-one basis for an intensive period that could be as long as 12 weeks, and they were expected to focus on the development of re-ablement plans and to regularly monitor progress and liaise with other professionals and members of the families of the service users. It is important that the Panel should underline the fact that the role of Inclusion Support Worker is not one for which HCPC registration as a Social Worker (or, for that matter, any other professional registration) is required.  This is a factor to which the Panel will return when it describes its decisions on the statutory grounds.

Decision on facts
9. The HCPC has accepted the advice it received from the Legal Assessor concerning the burden and standard of proof.  In reaching its decisions, the Panel has had regard to the Registrant’s responses to the factual Particulars given on 31 May 2018, but it has considered those responses along with the oral and documentary evidence.  In reaching its decisions the Panel has had regard to the totality of the evidence. There is one document, however, which the Panel entirely disregarded in making its findings, namely the determination of the Conduct and Competence Committee made in December 2014 arising from the NCC referral.

10. The Panel commenced its findings on the facts by forming a general view of the three witnesses who gave oral evidence before it. They were:
• Ms ME, a Social Worker who at the time the Registrant was working at LCC was Locality Manager for the County Council.  In that role she managed the Shared Lives Service and the Community Re-ablement Team within the Adults and Communities Department.  Ms ME did not work directly with the Registrant, but line managed the Registrant’s manager. On 6 May 2016, Ms ME was appointed as the Investigating Officer in relation to concerns that had arisen regarding the Registrant. The Panel found Ms ME to be a credible, fair and consistent witness whose evidence could be relied upon. It should, however, be noted that in some respects it was apparent from her evidence that her distance from the day-to-day work undertaken by the Registrant resulted in having expectations that exceeded those of Ms DS, the more immediate line-manager.
• Ms DS, at the time of the Registrant’s employment with LCC, was a Service Manager for the Inclusion Support Team.  She line-managed the Registrant.  The Panel found Ms DS to be a credible witness who was fair about the Registrant and, as with Ms ME, made appropriate concessions. The Panel was satisfied that her evidence could be relied upon.
• The Registrant. The Panel took into account the stress the Registrant was under when giving evidence but found that there were aspects of her evidence which were unsatisfactory. However, the Panel accepts that due to the passage of time, the amount of detailed information required about a number of service users and not having access to personal notes may have contributed to the difficulties the Registrant had in recalling specific details. There were occasions when she stated she could not answer the question asked and some occasions when her evidence was inconsistent with earlier accounts given by her.

Particular 1
11. The completed application form was included in the documentary exhibits. The work with Doncaster Council was stated to be the “Present/Most Recent Employment”, and it is clear from the evidence, including the Registrant’s admission, that that was inaccurate as the work at Doncaster had been followed by that at NCC. Further, the Registrant’s HCPC registration was not disclosed on the form.  It follows from these findings that both limbs of Particular 1 are proven.

Particular 2
12. It is accepted that on or around 26 March 2016, the Registrant contacted Service User A’s GP and requested that information concerning the service user’s mental health be disclosed to her. Particular 2(a) is therefore proven. As to whether the Registrant had obtained the informed consent of Service User A to make that contact, the Panel takes the view that to have done so would have required the Registrant making a specific request addressed to Service User A, informing her that she wished to make the specific contact with her GP and that the reason for doing so was to discuss mental health issues. The Registrant stated that for all her service users she obtained a general verbal consent at her first visit to them for the possibility that she might have to talk to other health professionals. The Panel has taken the view that informed consent would not have been obtained by this general statement made to Service User A. Having regard to all the evidence, and in particular to the replies that the Registrant made on 30 June 2016 to Ms ME during the LCC investigation process, the Panel finds that the Registrant did not make the specific request that would have been necessary to have obtained informed consent. Particular 2(b) is therefore proven. So far as Particular 2(c) is concerned, the documentary exhibits disclose that the records made on the electronic case recording system used by LCC for five contacts that took place between 21 March 2016, and 30 March 2016, were all made on 5 May 2016.  Particular 2(c) is proven.

Particular 3
13. The electronic case recording discloses that there was no record made between 18 March 2016 and 5 May 2016.  Particular 3(a) is proven.

14. The Particulars alleging that contacts did not take place – a general discussion. In each of Particulars 4(a), 4(b), 5, 6(a), 7(a) and 8(a), it is alleged that the Registrant “did not undertake and/or record” a visit or contact with the relevant service user on a date that is specifically alleged. As the approach the Panel has taken, to the question of whether these Particulars have been proven, has been consistent across these Particulars, it will be relevant to explain that approach generally. The documentary exhibits demonstrate that a contact with the service user was planned, but it is equally clear that no entry was made recording the contacts. It follows that in each respect the Particulars are proven as to not recording. The issue the Panel has also had to decide is whether the HCPC has proved that the contact did not take place. After careful scrutiny of all the evidence, the Panel has concluded that in circumstances where there is an entry in the Outlook diary that was used by the Registrant during her time at LCC, while there remains a possibility that a contact might have been recorded in the diary as something that was due to happen, but one which did not take place, nevertheless the diary entry has the consequence that HCPC has failed to discharge the burden of proving that the contact did not take place.

Particular 4
15. A planned visit was recorded for 15 April 2016. In deciding that the HCPC has not proved that the visit did not occur, the Panel acknowledges the response to the Allegation given on behalf of the Registrant at the commencement of the hearing. However, the Panel does not accept the Registrant’s oral evidence that Service User D was a hospital in-patient at this time. It considered, having looked at the relevant case records that the Registrant’s recollection was incorrect on this point. There is an entry in the Outlook diary for 15 April 2016.  Accordingly, Particular 4(a) is proven as to recording and not proven as to undertaking the visit on 15 April 2016. So far as Particular 4(b) is concerned, two further entries relating to Service User D are included in the Outlook diary, namely on 21 April 2016 and 27 April 2016.  Therefore, Particular 4(b) is proven as to recording, and not proven as to not undertaking any contact in the period of three weeks between 15 April 2016 and 3 May 2016.

Particular 5
16. The Outlook diary has an entry for Service User E on 22 April 2016.  Accordingly, the Panel finds that Particular 5 is proven as to not recording any contact with Service User E over a period of three weeks between 13 April 2016 and 5 May 2016, but not proven as to not undertaking any contact in that period.

Particular 6
17. The Outlook diary has an entry for Service User F on 26 April 2016.  Accordingly, so far as Particular 6(a) is concerned, the Panel finds that it is proven as to not recording a planned visit on 26 April 2016, but not proven as to not undertaking that visit. As to Particular 6(b), the Panel finds the HCPC has not discharged the burden of proving either limb because the Panel was satisfied that there had been a reasonable degree of contact between the Registrant and Service User F, and that it had been adequately recorded.

Particular 7
18. The Outlook diary has an entry for Service User G on 25 April 2016.  Accordingly, so far as Particular 7(a) is concerned, the Panel finds that it is proven as to not recording a planned visit on that day, but not proven as to not undertaking it. As the visit on 31 March 2016 was not recorded, Particular 7(b) is proven. The Panel finds that both limbs of Particular 7(c) are proven on the basis that there was insufficient contact and recording during the initial three week period of the twelve week programme.

Particular 8
19. Particular 8(a) is proven as to not recording the visit on 3 February 2016, but not proven as to not undertaking the visit. Particular 8(b) is proved because it is apparent that no contact with Service User H was recorded between 16 March 2016 and 29 April 2016.

Particular 9
20. Particular 9 alleges that the matters set out in Particular 1 were dishonest. There are two limbs of Particular 1, both of which the Panel has found to be proven, namely that the application to LCC for employment as an Inclusion Support Worker did not disclose the recent employment with NCC and that the application form did not disclose the Registrant’s HCPC registration. The question to be asked is whether the Registrant’s conduct was dishonest by the standards of ordinary decent people. In relation to the failure to disclose HCPC registration, the Registrant’s case is that she thought that it was not necessary for her to disclose that fact as the role for which the application was being submitted was not one for which the registration was required. The Panel accepts her evidence in that regard, finding it to be an explanation that was consistent with the fact that she did describe previous employments as a Social Worker. As an informed prospective employer would have understood that that previous work as a Social Worker would have necessarily involved registration with the HCPC or one of the other national Social Work regulators, the Panel does not consider that the failure to disclose the registration was designed to mislead as to the Registrant’s registration. The Panel does not consider that ordinary decent people would regard that omission as dishonest. However, different considerations apply to the fact that the most recent employment was said to be that with Doncaster Council. The Registrant accepts that her decision to withhold disclosure of the NCC employment was deliberate, and that it occurred in order to avoid the risk that LCC would receive a negative reference relating to her work at NCC. The Registrant has explained her actions by saying that personal circumstances required her to obtain work, and that she feared that a reference provided on behalf of NCC would be unfairly critical. The Panel has concluded that ordinary decent people would consider the failure to disclose the NCC work as the most recent to be dishonest, and that is so notwithstanding those factors that the Registrant has advanced by way of explanation. It follows that Particular 9 is proved with regard to Particular 1(a), but not with regard to Particular 1(b).

Decision on grounds
21. The task for the Panel is to decide if the proven facts satisfy either one or other, or potentially both, of the statutory grounds of misconduct and lack of competence.

22. It has already been stated that the role for which the Registrant applied (Particulars 1 and 9) and in which she was working (Particulars 2 to 8) was not one for which her HCPC registration as a Social Worker was required.  It has been necessary for the Panel to decide what impact this fact has on  whether the proven facts satisfy the statutory grounds. The conclusion of the Panel is that no lack of competence is demonstrated by the findings of fact made by the Panel. This conclusion was arrived at for the following reason, as there was no work as a Social Worker being undertaken, it was not possible realistically to identify any shortcomings that could be equated to breaches of the HCPC’s Standards of Proficiency for Social Workers in England.

23. The fact that the role for which the application was submitted to LCC was not a social work role is, in the judgement of the Panel, irrelevant to the issue of whether the findings made in relation to Particulars 1 and 9 amount to misconduct on the part of an HCPC registrant. The obligation to behave with integrity and honesty applies to HCPC registrants in all areas of their lives, whether professional or personal. By knowingly submitting a misleading job application (Particular 1(a)) and doing so dishonestly (Particular 9), the Registrant breached Standard 13 of the HCPC’s Standards of conduct, performance and ethics in force at the time when the application was submitted. That standard stated, “You must behave with honesty and integrity and make sure that your behaviour does not damage the public’s confidence in you or your profession.”

24. The Panel is also satisfied that the approach to Service User A’s GP without having obtained the informed consent of the service user to do so (Particulars 2(a) and 2(b)), is also behaviour that it is proper to consider as potentially amounting to misconduct. This is because the Registrant was a Social Worker, although not working as such, and so knew the importance of obtaining informed consent before obtaining confidential information of the type she sought. To that extent it is the Panel’s view that the role in which she was working is not determinative of this matter.

25. Having given careful consideration to the findings of fact made against the Registrant in Particulars 3 to 8 inclusive, the Panel is of the view that it would not be appropriate to include these in a finding of misconduct. In the main these proven Particulars are record-keeping failings, although included in them are limited findings of failing to maintain adequate contact.  The reasons why the Panel considers it would not be appropriate to include them in a finding of misconduct are the following:
• The issue for the Panel is not a simple one of whether there was a breach of an expectation or even of a requirement of how LCC would wish Inclusion Support Workers to carry out their work. The issue is whether any falling short of LCC’s expectations could be considered sufficiently serious to call into question the Registrant’s standing as a Social Worker.
• The Panel does not consider that the evidence concerning the expectations of Inclusion Support Workers were sufficiently particularised for a conclusion to be reached that any falling short by the Registrant should be considered to be sufficiently serious to reflect on the Registrant as a Social Worker.  The Panel noted the absence of written policies, procedures or best practice guidance on such matters as visit frequency and record keeping. This was confirmed in the evidence of Ms ME and Ms DS.
• When the Registrant disclosed that she was significantly behind with her record-keeping, she was told that she should make her records within 48 hours of the event. However, there does not appear to have been any attempt to monitor or review her compliance with the 48 hour requirement. Ms DS, in her evidence, stated that “the record keeping issues took a back seat” because she was trying to provide the Registrant with support in relation to her personal difficulties.
• Added to this is the fact that the Panel has concluded that the scope for service users to be disadvantaged by any of the matters within Particulars 3 to 8 found against the Registrant was limited, and, in particular, very much less than would have been the case had the same failings occurred in a social work role.

26. It follows that those Particulars that the Panel has considered are capable of amounting to misconduct (i.e. 1(a), 2(a), 2(b) and 9) are of sufficient gravity properly to constitute misconduct on the part of a Social Worker and do in fact amount to misconduct. 

Decision on impairment 
27. The issue the Panel has to decide is whether the established misconduct, based as it is on the finding that factual Particulars 1(a), 2(a), 2(b) and 9 are proven, is currently impairing the Registrant’s fitness to practise. The Panel is required to consider both the personal and public components of impairment.

28. The Panel concluded that it was necessary to consider impairment of fitness to practise separately in relation to the obtaining of informed consent finding (Particular 2(a) and 2(b)) and the dishonest job application (Particulars 1 and 9).

29. So far as the obtaining of informed consent is concerned, the Panel has concluded that the Registrant has remediated her failings.  It has already been stated that the Panel accepts that the Registrant was aware of the need to obtain consent, and that she sought consent in a general sense.  The issue in the instant case was that there was a need for specific and informed consent, and that was not obtained. Since the incident involving Service User A, the Registrant has taken practical steps to ensure that in future, she would obtain informed consent. She has devised a form, and will ensure that all service users give consent in writing. The Panel is satisfied that there is no risk of repetition of this breach and that accordingly it is not appropriate to find that there is a personal component of impairment on this issue. Furthermore, the Panel is satisfied that, given the successful remediation, a finding of impairment of fitness to practise is not required to satisfy the wider considerations relevant to the public component. Accordingly, no finding of current impairment of fitness to practise is made in relation to the misconduct arising from Particulars 2(a) and 2(b).

30. Different considerations apply to the dishonest submission of the application form. The Panel accepts that the Registrant is generally an honest person and that this particular instance of dishonesty arose when she was experiencing difficult personal circumstances. Her need to secure employment and the belief that she would not obtain the role if she gave the correct details, in the context of her perception of the referee’s bias, impaired her judgement. In evidence before the Panel, the Registrant accepted that she should not have behaved as she did.  Taking these factors into account, as well as applying the impression of the Registrant obtained during the course of this hearing, the Panel has concluded that there is not a sufficiently high risk of repetition of dishonest behaviour to justify a finding on the personal component of current impairment of fitness to practise.

31. However, with regard to the public component of current impairment of fitness to practise, the Panel is satisfied that it is necessary to make that finding with regard to the dishonest submission of the job application. Despite this being an isolated incident within the context of difficult personal circumstances, the Panel nonetheless found that the Registrant’s actions were deliberate and undertaken with the intention of obtaining a job she feared she would not otherwise obtain. By acting as she did, she removed from LCC the opportunity to consider fully and properly her suitability for the post, including the ability to investigate any concerns held by the previous employer. Honesty is a fundamental tenet of social work practice and fair-minded members of the public would be concerned by the Registrant’s dishonesty. Not only would public confidence in the social work profession be diminished were no finding of current impairment of fitness to practise made, but the Panel would also be failing to send out the appropriate message to other Social Workers. For these reasons it is necessary for a public component finding of current impairment of fitness to practise to be made with regard to Particulars 1(a) and 9.

Decision on Sanction
32. The Panel received submissions on sanction after the decision on the Allegation was announced.

33. The Presenting Officer reminded the Panel of the proper purpose of a sanction and submitted that the Panel should have regard to the guidance in the HCPC’s Indicative Sanctions Policy.  He also reminded the Panel that findings of dishonesty against professional people have been held to be particularly serious.  He referred to the earlier finding of the HCPC Conduct and Competence Committee, made in December 2014, when a Caution Order for three years had been imposed, and submitted that an aggravating factor was that findings of professional misconduct had been made against the Registrant arising from events in 2013 (by the 2014 Panel), 2014 (the dishonesty submission of the job application to LCC) and 2016 (the informed consent finding in the present case).

34. On behalf of the Registrant, Mr Anastasiades referred to the fact that there was no finding of lack of competence and submitted that the Registrant does not create a risk of harm to service users. He also submitted that during the Registrant’s work as a Social Worker for a year from October 2017, no problems had been identified.  He submitted that the Panel could take the view that the case was exceptional and that no sanction is required. He accordingly urged the Panel to make no order.

35. The Panel has accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor. Accordingly, the Panel has approached the issue of sanction on the basis that a sanction is not to be imposed to punish the Registrant. A sanction is only to be imposed to the extent that it is required to protect members of the public and to maintain a proper degree of confidence in the profession of social work and the regulation of that profession. To ensure that these principles are applied, it is necessary for the Panel initially to decide if the finding that the Allegation is well founded requires the imposition of any sanction. If it is decided that a sanction is required, then the available sanctions are to be considered in an ascending order of seriousness.

36. The Panel began its deliberations by identifying the mitigating and aggravating factors.

37. The Panel considered that an aggravating factor was that the dishonest act was committed in early 2014, when the Registrant knew that she was the subject of the HCPC investigation that resulted in the December 2014 hearing before the Conduct and Competence Committee, although it is fair to state that that earlier investigation was concerned with the Registrant’s practice and did not involve issues of dishonesty.

38. In the Registrant’s favour, the Panel considered that it was appropriate to take the following factors into account:
• The dishonest act was a single, isolated incident that occurred at a time when the Registrant was experiencing significant personal issues, and against a background which included her belief that she had been treated unfairly in her previous employment.
• The Registrant has developed insight for the poor judgement the dishonest application represented.  She now appreciates that she had a tendency to “run away” from problems and not deal with them.  She now has put measures in place to deal with problems.  She has sought counselling, speaks to friends and family and has sought support from managers.
• Since she made the dishonest application, the Registrant has applied for a number of social work posts in which she has fully disclosed both the NCC employment and the earlier HCPC determination.  The Panel has received written confirmation from the recruitment agency through which the Registrant secures placements that she has done this.
• The recruitment agency has also confirmed that there have been no complaints regarding, “performance, quality of work and in respect of her honesty or integrity”, arising from the Registrant’s most recent employment since October 2017.

39. The Panel acknowledged the gravity of a finding of dishonesty. The Public is entitled to expect Social Workers to be honest and trustworthy, The Panel’s acceptance of which resulted in the finding of current impairment of fitness to practise in this case.

40. A consequence of the Panel’s finding on the issue of current impairment of fitness to practise is that a sanction is not required to protect the public from the risk of harm. This is so because the Panel has found that there is no significant risk of repetition of the matter of dishonesty found against the Registrant.

41. It is necessary, however, for the Panel to be satisfied that its decision on sanction addresses the factor that resulted in the finding of current impairment of fitness to practise, namely the public component concerning the Registrant’s dishonest job application.

42. Having given the matter very careful consideration, the Panel is satisfied that in this particular case a sanction is not required. This is because given the factors that have already been identified, including the absence of a risk of repetition, the finding of misconduct and current impairment of fitness to practise are sufficiently serious markers to satisfy the need for the public’s trust and confidence to be maintained in the profession and the regulatory process.

43. The Panel did not make this decision lightly. It acknowledges that dishonesty is considered to be a serious breach on the part of any registrant.  The Panel has carefully considered the guidance contained in the HCPC’s Indicative Sanctions Policy, and is confident that its decision is in keeping with the guidance contained in that document. In order to satisfy itself that it was appropriate to take no further action, the Panel considered whether a caution order should be imposed. The conclusion of the Panel was that the imposition of a caution order would be disproportionate and would have an unduly punitive effect on the Registrant.

Order

No information currently available

Notes

No notes available

Hearing History

History of Hearings for Mrs Vrushali Rajnish Jiyaviya

Date Panel Hearing type Outcomes / Status
26/11/2018 Conduct and Competence Committee Final Hearing No further action
31/05/2018 Conduct and Competence Committee Final Hearing Adjourned part heard
01/12/2014 Conduct and Competence Committee Final Hearing Caution