Nicola Morgan

Profession: Physiotherapist

Registration Number: PH78562

Hearing Type: Restoration Hearing

Date and Time of hearing: 10:00 05/10/2021 End: 17:00 05/10/2021

Location: Virtual via Video Conference

Panel: Conduct and Competence Committee
Outcome: Restoration not granted

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Allegation

No information currently available

Finding

Background

1.On 23 April 2010 a panel of the Conduct and Competence Committee of the HCPC found the fitness to practise of Miss Morgan, in those days a registered physiotherapist, impaired by reason of misconduct and lack of competence. A sanction of a Striking Off Order was imposed – this, after a 3-day hearing from which both the Registrant and her legal representative were absent. The panel’s determination referred to the fact that there had been no evidence of a request for an adjournment.

2. All eight factual particulars of the Allegation were found proved.

3. In brief, the evidence proved that Miss Morgan had dishonestly obtained a certificate of membership of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) to which she was not entitled, that, having been told of this non-entitlement, she nonetheless repeatedly failed to return the certificate and, in June 2008, applied for a position as a Physiotherapist at Brize Norton. In so doing, she falsely claimed that she had been a member of the CSP since October 1997. Furthermore, by displaying a certificate in her treatment room, she gave the false impression that she had qualified as a Chartered Physiotherapist in 1990. All these actions were dishonest.

4. Later, in applying to work as a physiotherapist at Nuffield Proactive Help, she included a number of false qualifications on her CV. Similarly, the panel found proved an allegation that she had posted false information in relation to her professional qualifications and experience at Fitness First Bath.

5. All the above actions were found to be dishonest and to amount to misconduct.

6. Additionally, on 7 February 2007, Miss Morgan treated a male patient by use of electrotherapy, as a result of which he sustained severe burns to his back. This amounted to lack of competence and the panel determined that Miss Morgan’s fitness to practise was impaired both by virtue of this and by the particulars that charged dishonesty.

7. In determining that the only appropriate and proportionate sanction to impose was that of a Striking Off Order, the panel characterised Miss Morgan’s misconduct, which had ranged over a prolonged period of time, as calculated and manipulative to an extremely high level.

8. No appeal was lodged against these findings.

9. In today’s hearing, Miss Morgan gave evidence to the effect that in 2014 she was employed, via an agency, as an Exercise Remedial Instructor working for the Ministry of Defence in Germany. She added that she was later arrested and charged on suspicion of having committed fraud by false representation.

10. In July 2018 the papers in front of today’s Panel reveal that Miss Morgan was interviewed in relation to this new matter.

11. On 10 November 2020 at Swindon Crown Court the prosecution offered no evidence and the judge recorded a formal verdict of not guilty.

12. Miss Morgan informed the Panel that she has been working for some time as a volunteer for the Royal British Legion.

Decision

13. The Panel paid due regard to all the evidence, both written and oral in this case, and listened with care to the submissions from both parties. It accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor and took note of the contents of the November 2017 HCPTS Practice Note entitled ‘Restoration to the Register’.

14. The Applicant in her evidence and her submissions repeatedly complained that she had been unlawfully struck off by the HCPC in 2010 and that the vast majority of the particulars that were found proved by that panel were wrong decisions. She had never been dishonest, she claimed, and a number of witnesses called by the HCPC had combined to give false testimony. She said she had no idea that she had a right of appeal and that she had only recently gathered that an application to restore her name to the register was possible. She was emotional in stating her desire to return to her profession of choice.

15. Mr Lloyd, in opposing this application, submitted to the Panel that the Applicant had shown no meaningful insight, which was rooted in a continued denial of the misconduct and lack of competence found proved. He emphasised that there was little evidence that the Applicant had demonstrated any remediation and pointed to the fact that she had accepted that she had done no Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for a minimum of 5 years.

16. Conscious that the Applicant has to show, on a balance of probabilities, that she should be restored to the register, the Panel has determined that she has failed to meet the general requirements of registration and that she is not a fit and proper person to return to the profession of physiotherapy. In this latter context, the Panel echoes the views of those expressed in 2010 that her actions were at the very highest end of dishonesty.

17. The Applicant has shown little or no insight into her failings, in the view of the Panel. Instead, she seeks to spread blame in other quarters. She has taken no remedial steps to speak of and there has been a significant lack of CPD. Although she claims that this latter failure is attributable to the pandemic and the stress of the criminal proceedings, the Panel takes the view that there was nothing to prevent her from taking part in appropriate online courses.

18. For all the above reasons, the Panel rejects this application for restoration.

 

Order

The Panel refuses the application.

Notes

No notes available

Hearing History

History of Hearings for Nicola Morgan

Date Panel Hearing type Outcomes / Status
05/10/2021 Conduct and Competence Committee Restoration Hearing Restoration not granted