Karen M Birse
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As a registered Paramedic (PA14105) 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 practise is impaired.
Preliminary Matters - Notice and Proceeding in Absence
1. The Panel was satisfied that notice of today’s hearing had been properly served on 9 December 2021 on the Registrant at her registered email address with the HCPC, and on her solicitor. An email delivery receipt was also provided to the Panel. The Registrant’s solicitor sent an email to the HCPC dated 7 December 2021 confirming that the Registrant was content to waive the formal notice period of 28 days.
2. The Panel considered Ms Mitchell-Dunn’s application to proceed in the Registrant’s absence. She reminded the Panel that it has found good service and that the Registrant’s solicitor sent an email to the HCPC dated 13 December 2021 stating :-
“Thank you for your emails. I can confirm receipt by myself and Karen Birse, of the Notice of Hearing. I attach the signed Voluntary Removal Agreement and can confirm that neither myself nor Karen Birse will be attending The Hearing on 16th December. We are satisfied that Karen’s position is adequately expressed in the documentation previously provided”.
3. The Registrant has signed the Voluntary Removal Agreement (VRA) and the HCPC has explained to her the need to place the VRA before a Panel at this hearing. Ms Mitchell-Dunn submitted that the Registrant had voluntarily absented herself and that it was in the Registrant’s and the public interest to proceed.
4. The Panel is aware that its discretion to proceed in absence is one which should be exercised with care. The Legal Assessor referred the Panel to GMC v Adeogba  EWCA Civ 162 which makes clear that the first question the Panel should ask is whether all reasonable efforts have been taken to serve the Registrant with notice. Thereafter, if the Panel is satisfied about notice, the discretion whether to proceed must be exercised having regard to all the circumstances of which the Panel is aware, with fairness to the Registrant being a prime consideration, but with fairness to the HCPC and the interests of the public also taken into account.
5. The Panel decided to proceed in the Registrant’s absence as it is satisfied that it is fair and appropriate to do so. In reaching this decision, the Panel has taken account that there has been no request for an adjournment, and that the Registrant has positively informed the HCPC that she will not be attending. She has returned the signed VRA clearly indicating that she wishes to be voluntarily removed from the Register.
6. The Panel was mindful that this is a health case and, having taken advice from the Legal Assessor as to the interests of justice, the Panel concluded that it was appropriate to conduct the entire hearing in private in order to protect the Registrant’s privacy.
Order: The Panel directs the Registrar to remove the name of Ms Karen M. Birse from the Register with immediate effect.
Right of Appeal
You may appeal to the High Court in England and Wales against the Panel’s decision and the order it has made against you.
Under Article 29(10) of the Health Professions Order 2001, any appeal must be made within 28 days of the date when this notice is served on you. The Panel’s order will not take effect until the appeal period has expired or, if you appeal, until that appeal is disposed of or withdrawn.
History of Hearings for Karen M Birse
|Date||Panel||Hearing type||Outcomes / Status|
|16/12/2021||Health Committee||Voluntary Removal Agreement||Voluntary Removal agreed|