Ms Denise Evans
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As a registered Occupational Therapist (OT70709) your fitness to practise is impaired by reason of a health condition. In that:
1. You have a physical and/or mental health condition as set out in Schedule A;
2. By reason of your health your fitness to practice is impaired.
1. The Panel found that there had been good service of the Notice of Hearing by an e-mail dated 13 May 2020 informing the Registrant of a hearing to consider a proposal for voluntary removal by videoconference due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Proceeding in absence of the Registrant
2. Ms Ktisti submitted that the hearing should proceed in the absence of the Registrant. She referred the Panel to correspondence between the Registrant and an HCPC scheduling officer. The Registrant was advised that she was welcome to attend the videoconference if she wished to do so. The Registrant sent an e-mail dated 7 May 2020 stating “Yes I agree for the VRA hearing provisionally set for Friday 19 June at 10 am to take place. However, I wish not to be present at the VRA hearing”.
3. The Panel accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor and had regard to the HCPTS Practice Note “Proceeding in the absence of the Registrant”.
4. The Panel decided that it was appropriate to proceed with the hearing in the absence of the Registrant. The Registrant’s position in her email was clear that she expects the hearing to proceed in her absence and does not wish to attend. She has waived her right to attend the hearing and it is in the public interest for the hearing to consider the proposed Voluntary Removal Agreement to proceed without delay.
Hearing in Private
5. Ms Ktisti made an application for the whole of the hearing to be heard in private to protect the Registrant’s private life.
6. The Panel accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor and had regard to the HCPTS Practice Note “Conducting Hearings in private”.
7. The Panel are sitting as a Health Committee and the allegation concerns the Registrant’s health. The Practice Note explains that such cases will usually be heard entirely in private to protect the Registrant’s private life unless there are public interest reasons not to do so. The Panel decided that it was appropriate to hear the whole of the case in private.
8. The Panel carefully considered the nature of the allegation and the evidence to support it. The allegation does not involve allegations involving culpability such as misconduct or dishonesty. The allegation arose from a performance management issue which was underpinned by a health condition. The Panel also noted that throughout the process the Registrant has demonstrated insight. The Registrant’s employer supported her through the performance management process. The Registrant fully acknowledged that support and fully engaged in the performance management process. From an early stage in the process the Registrant accepted that there were valid concerns, and in her self-referral to the HCPC she stated that she recognised that her practice had “fallen short”. Her insight is also demonstrated by her decision not to practise as an Occupational Therapist.
9. In the Panel’s judgment there were no features in the case which indicated that a substantive hearing was required. To the contrary, this was a case where an expedited consensual disposal of the matter was proportionate, appropriate, and in the public interest. The Panel was satisfied that an informed member of the public would not have any reservations about the disposal of the matter by consent.
10. The Panel therefore approved the proposed Voluntary Removal Agreement.
Order: The Registrar is directed to remove the name of Ms Denise Evans from the Register with immediate effect.
This is Voluntary Removal Agreement Hearing took place remotely via video conference on Friday 19 June 2020.
History of Hearings for Ms Denise Evans
|Date||Panel||Hearing type||Outcomes / Status|
|19/06/2020||Health Committee||Voluntary Removal Agreement||Voluntary Removal agreed|