Paula Bailey

: Social worker

: SW37586

: Final Hearing

Date and Time of hearing:10:00 29/08/2017 End: 17:00 01/09/2017

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

: Conduct and Competence Committee
: Suspended

Allegation

(As amended at the substantive hearing on 29 August 2017)

During the course of your employment as a Social Worker for Nottingham City Council you:

1) Between approximately 25 March 2013 and 28 April 2014, you received payment to provide care/assistance to Service User A which was a conflict of interests because:

a) you were employed by the same Council that was funding the payments;

b) you are related to Service User A;

2) Did not obtain written consent from the Head of Service to undertake the paid employment referred to in paragraph 1;

3) Did not disclose to the Direct Payments Team that you were acting as a paid carer/personal assistant for Service User A until approximately May 2014;

4) No Evidence offered in relation to this particular

5) On more than one occasion you accessed the following records without authorisation and/or a work-related reason:

a) In respect of Service User A:

i. His CareFirst records between approximately 26 January 2011 and 20 May 2014;

ii. His Castle records between approximately 26 January 2011 and 1 July 2014;

b) Service User B’s CareFirst records between approximately 9 July 2010 and 22 March 2013;

6) Your actions as described at paragraph 3 were dishonest.

7) The matters as described in paragraphs 1 - 5 constitute misconduct and/or lack of competence.

8) The matters as described in paragraph 6 constitutes misconduct.

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

Finding

Preliminary Matters

Service of Notice

1. The HCPC sent a Notice of Hearing to the Registrant’s registered address on 12 June 2017. The Panel was satisfied that good service had been effected in accordance with the HCPC (Conduct and Competence Committee)(Procedure) Rules 2003 (the Rules).

Proceeding in the absence of the Registrant

2. Mr Paterson made an application for the hearing to proceed in the absence of the Registrant.

3. The case was previously listed for a Final Hearing on 6 February 2017. There was some engagement from the Registrant and she left a telephone message indicating that she might not attend the hearing. She was asked to provide an e-mail address so that the final hearing bundle could be sent to her, but she did not do so. The final hearing bundle was not sent to the Registrant by post. On 6 February 2017 the Panel decided not to proceed in the Registrant’s absence because the case papers had not been properly served on her.

4. The bundle of documents for today’s hearing was sent to the Registrant by special delivery on 4 July 2017. They were returned to the HCPC as “not called for”. Further steps were taken by the HCPC to try to serve the papers on the Registrant by e-mail. Although there was contact between the Registrant and a Legal Assistant at Kingsley Napley LLP, the Registrant did reply to confirm that she had received the bundle electronically.

5. The Panel accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor and applied the guidance in the HCPTS Practice Note entitled “Proceeding in the Absence of the Registrant”.

6. The Panel carefully considered the circumstances of the Registrant’s absence. The Panel decided that the Registrant is aware of the proceedings and has waived her right to attend. This case has been adjourned on one occasion and that has not secured the Registrant’s attendance. The Panel decided that it was unlikely that an adjournment would secure the Registrant’s attendance. There is no information that suggests that the Registrant wished to be represented. The Panel noted that there was a disadvantage to the Registrant in not attending the hearing to present her defence and mitigating circumstances. However, this is a disadvantage of her own making, and it is outweighed by the public interest that this matter is concluded expeditiously.

Amendment of the Allegation

7. Mr Paterson made an application to amend the Allegation. The proposed amendment was set out in a letter sent to the Registrant’s registered address on 3 August 2016. The HCPC proposed to offer no evidence on particular 4 and therefore a consequential amendment to particular 6 was appropriate to delete the reference to particular 4. Mr Paterson informed the Panel that the HCPC had reviewed the evidence. The decision to offer no evidence on particular 4 was because the evidence did not identify any basis for a Panel to make a finding of dishonesty or misconduct.

8. The Panel accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor.

9. The Panel noted the reason given by Mr Paterson for the decision to offer no evidence on particular 4 and was satisfied that there was no under-prosecution by the HCPC. The proposed amendment removes one aspect of the dishonesty alleged and does not involve any unfairness to the Registrant. The Panel agreed to the proposed amendment.

Proceeding in private

10. Mr Paterson advised the Panel that he would present the case without reference to matters which concerned the Registrant’s private life. However, if matters relating to the Registrant’s private life arose during the evidence it might be appropriate for those matters to be heard in private.

11. The Panel accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor and decided that evidence relating to the Registrant’s private family circumstances should be heard in private to protect her private life. The remainder of the case was heard in public.

12. The Panel did not hear oral evidence relating to the Registrant’s health, but had read GP letters submitted by the Registrant and other documents which included reference to the Registrant’s family circumstances.

Background

13. The Registrant was employed as a Social Worker at Nottingham City Council (the “Council”). She was responsible for completing safeguarding enquiries and interventions within a generic team working with all types of service users. The Registrant’s line manager was IM, City Safeguarding Manager.

14. In approximately April 2015, LB, Interim Health Integration Manager at the Council, was appointed to investigate a disciplinary matter relating to secondary employment, direct payments and possible conflict of interest issues arising. It was alleged that the Registrant had undertaken a role as carer for two individuals who were related to her, Service Users A and B. She had received payments in respect of providing caring services from the Council’s Direct Payments Team. It was also alleged that she had not disclosed this information either as secondary employment, or disclosed the fact of her family relationship to Service User A. LB was provided with the details of a fact-finding exercise carried out by IM in November 2014.

15. As part of her investigation, LB contacted the Council’s IT department to request an audit of who had accessed the social care electronic records for Service User A and B.

16. LB conducted interviews with the Registrant. In the interviews the Registrant admitted that she had received payments in respect of her role as a carer for Service Users A and B and that she had accessed their electronic case records.

Decision on Facts

17. The Panel heard evidence from LB. The Panel found that her evidence was credible and reliable.

18. The Panel read and considered the documentary evidence. The documentary evidence included hearsay statements from individuals who were not called to give evidence. The Panel considered carefully the weight to give to the hearsay evidence. The Panel decided to give weight to the hearsay statement of AS, a Direct Payments Officer. The Panel took into account the fact that the statement could not be tested in evidence and that the Registrant disputed part of its content. Nevertheless, the Panel decided to give weight to the statement. It was a signed statement taken for the purpose of a disciplinary investigation. AS had no reason to lie about the Registrant. Both the Registrant and AS stated that they were friends. AS’s statement that she did not know that the Registrant was being paid for caring duties is consistent with the statement of JB, the head of the Direct Payments Team. The Panel’s view was that if the Registrant had informed AS of the circumstances of the Direct Payment, AS would have sought advice or taken action.

19. The Panel also gave weight to the hearsay evidence of JB, which was in the form of an e-mail from JB to LB. Again, the Panel took into account the fact that this evidence could not be tested. This evidence was in the form of an e-mail, but JB was aware that the information he provided was for the purpose of a disciplinary investigation. JB had no reason to lie about the Registrant; his evidence was consistent with the statement of AS; and consistent with his later action of reporting the Registrant to managers as soon as he was aware that she was receiving Direct Payments.

20. The Panel carefully considered the Registrant’s written submissions and documents. The Panel did not accept some of the Registrant’s statements. It did not accept her as a credible and reliable reporter of past events because her previous statements have not been reliable. The Panel considered she was evasive when she was initially asked about the receipt of Direct Payments. On 17 June 2014, during an informal discussion between IM and the Registrant regarding secondary employment for Service User A, the Registrant stated that this was a one-off in an emergency. In an e-mail dated 18 June 2014 to IM, the Registrant stated that she had asked the Direct Payments Team if she was allowed to receive payment and that she was advised that it was. She added that the provision of care was “an emergency procedure”. In the fact-finding discussion on 19 November 2014, the Registrant told IM that when she spoke to IM in June she had forgotten about the hours she had worked and that she had panicked when she was asked about this.

21. The Panel did not accept the Registrant’s assertion that she had asked the Direct Payments Team if she was allowed to receive payment. The Registrant specifically mentioned AS and JB, who both clearly stated that they were unaware that the Registrant was receiving Direct Payments until the monitoring information was sent to the Direct Payments Team in March 2014.

22. In her written representations the Registrant stated that her actions were taken “without rational thought”. Although there were health issues, the Registrant was well enough to continue to work as a Social Worker. At the supervision on 21 January 2014, the Registrant’s supervision notes record “…All going well [Registrant] stepping back a bit now to get a better balance for herself”.

Particular 1

23. The Panel found that the Registrant received Direct Payments to provide assistance to Service User A between 25 March 2013 and 28 April 2014 by the evidence of LB and the documentary evidence. LB received evidence of payments in the form of bank statements for Service User A’s Direct Payment, showing a series of payments. The payments were confirmed by a P45 provided by the Registrant showing that she was employed by Service User A. The Registrant also confirmed when she was interviewed by LB that she received the payments.

24. The payments were made from a Direct Payment made by the Council to Service User A, which was for the purpose of allowing Service User A to employ Personal Assistants or purchase care services.

25. The Registrant was employed by the Council and she was related to Service User A.

26. There is nothing in the Council’s policies which expressly states that it is a conflict of interest for an employee to receive a Direct Payment for care for a service user. Nevertheless, a conflict of interest can arise in a wide variety of circumstances. The introduction to the Council’s Code of Conduct, which is incorporated into the contract of employment, and the Registrant’s job description state: “This Code is designed for the protection of staff and if the Code is followed then staff should not find themselves in a situation where their conduct could create an impression of a conflict of interest, or corruption in the minds of the public. It cannot cover every eventuality and further guidance should be sought from an employee’s Head of Service, or, in the case of Directors, the Chief Executive, if they are unsure of the standards expected of them”. The Code also states at paragraph 6.4: “Although it is accepted that employees’ off duty hours are their personal concern, all employees should avoid situations whereby their work and personal interests conflict or may appear to conflict”

27. The Code sets out a system for employees to register any personal interests and to give written notice of any contract in which the Council is involved and in which the employee has a financial interest. The Registrant did not seek any guidance from her manager in relation to the receipt of Direct Payments.

28. There is also no provision in the Council’s policies which expressly covers the position where a relative is receiving a Direct Payment for caring services provided to a service user. There is a guidance note covering Direct Payments to immediate family members, but this does not address the situation of relatives who do not live in the same household, nor does it consider conflict of interest issues.

29. The evidence of AS in her written statement was that she had not come across this situation before despite her experience in Direct Payments, and that she would have asked her manager, JB. She clearly recognised the need to take advice. By contrast, the Registrant did not take advice.

30. In her written representations, the Registrant stated that she now accepts that there was a conflict of interest at the time she was in receipt of Direct Payments. In September 2014, after the Registrant had been questioned as to whether she had a second job and whether she had received a Direct Payment, the Registrant acknowledged the conflict of interest in a supervision session. The record of the meeting, signed by the Registrant, stated: “They are having a managed account for [Service User A’s] Direct Payment as [the Registrant] feels this prevents any conflict of interest as she works for the Council”.

31. The Panel rejected the Registrant’s explanation that she was not in a rational frame of mind when she was in receipt of Direct Payments for a period of 11 months and only applied her mind as a Social Worker after she was questioned by her manager. The Panel found that the Registrant’s initial evasiveness when she was questioned about her receipt of Direct Payments was because she knew throughout that there was a conflict of interest, and that she should have sought advice and permission.

32. The Panel found particulars 1(a) and 1(b) proved.

Particular 2

33. The Registrant did not obtain written consent from the Head of Service, LS, to undertake paid employment. There was no written record of such consent. When she was interviewed by LB, the Registrant admitted that she had not sought such consent.

34. The Registrant was required to obtain written consent under paragraph 6.1 of the Council’s Code of Conduct.

35. The Panel found particular 2 proved by the evidence of LB and the documentary evidence.

Particular 3

36. The Registrant had conversations with AS in Direct Payments and AS was aware that the Registrant was supporting her relative, Service User A. However, she did not know that the Registrant was herself receiving payment for the work.

37. The Panel did not accept the Registrant’s assertion, when she was interviewed by LB, that she informed AS and JB about her role as a paid carer.

38. The Panel found particular 3 proved by the documentary evidence.

Particular 4

39. The HCPC offered no evidence and the Panel found particular 4 not proved.

Particular 5

40. The Panel reviewed the documentary evidence which was obtained by LB in her investigation. This showed that on more than one occasion the Registrant accessed Service User A’s records on the Care First system between 26 January 2011 and 20 May 2014 and on the Castle system between 26 January 2011 and 1 July 2014. She also accessed Service User B’s records on the Care First system on more than one occasion between 9 July 2011 and 1 July 2014.

41. When she was interviewed by LB, the Registrant admitted that she accessed the records. She also agreed that she was aware of the corporate data policy and had completed the information security module training. Her stated reason for accessing the records was that she was concerned that Service User A should receive the care he needed and was concerned about the service and attitude of the caring service provided by Jackdaw, the Council’s in-house caring service.

42. The Panel found particular 5(a)(i) and (ii) and 5(b) proved by the evidence of LB and the documentary evidence.

Particular 6

43. In her oral evidence LB accepted that there was no specific obligation on the Registrant to disclose to the Direct Payments Team that she was acting as a paid carer. There was an expectation that the Registrant should, at the least, have informed her manager.

44. The Panel carefully considered whether it should draw any inferences about the Registrant’s motivation, taking into account all the evidence. The Registrant was aware of the Council’s guidance on Direct Payments. She had helped to write the documents. She was aware that Direct Payments should not be used for family members who live together. The Registrant was aware that there was a conflict of interest and of the need for transparency where there was such a conflict. When she was interviewed by LB the Registrant made a false assertion that she had disclosed to the Direct Payments Team that she was acting as a paid carer. The Panel rejected as not credible the Registrant’s explanation that she was not thinking rationally as a Social Worker at the relevant time. The Panel also took into account the evidence of the Registrant’s evasive answers when she was first asked about her secondary employment by IM.

45. The Panel considered that the Registrant had an interest in not disclosing the information to the Direct Payments Team. She knew there was a high chance that the Direct Payments Team would report concerns if they became aware of the information. Indeed, this is what did happen. The Registrant benefitted from the lack of scrutiny of her secondary employment. There was no close monitoring and no steps taken to address the conflict of interest. Taking into account all the evidence, the Panel drew an inference that the Registrant did not disclose her paid employment to the Direct Payments Team because she did not wish the Council to become aware of this information.

46. The Panel decided that the Registrant therefore acted dishonestly by the standards of honest Social Workers and that she realised that what she was doing was dishonest by those standards.

47. The Panel found particular 6 proved.

Decision on Grounds

48. The question of whether the proven facts constitute misconduct or a lack of competence is for the judgment of the Panel and there is no burden or standard of proof.

49. There is no statutory definition of misconduct, but the Panel had regard to the guidance of Lord Clyde in Roylance v GMC (No2) [2001] 1 AC 311: “Misconduct is a word of general effect, involving some act or omission which falls short of what would be proper in the circumstances. The standard of propriety may often be found by reference to the rules and standards ordinarily required to be followed by a …practitioner in the particular circumstances”. The conduct must be serious, in that it falls well below the required standards.

50. A lack of competence is a standard of work which is unacceptably low. It will usually be demonstrated by a fair sample of the Registrant’s work. The Panel’s findings of fact in this case do not relate to the standard of the Registrant’s work as a Social Worker and the Panel do not have a fair sample of the Registrant’s work. The Panel found that the proved facts do not constitute a lack of competence.

51. The Panel has found that the Registrant was aware of the conflict of interest, but continued to receive payments without reporting this. The Registrant’s lack of transparency had the potential to damage the reputation of the Council because public confidence in the Council depends on employees fully declaring their personal interests. In the Panel’s judgment, the Registrant’s continued acceptance of the payments over an 11-month period, in circumstances where there was a conflict of interest, without reporting it, fell well below the standards of a Social Worker and was sufficiently serious to constitute misconduct.

52. The failure to obtain written consent from the Head of Service for the secondary employment was a serious breach of the Council’s Code of Conduct. The Panel did not accept the Registrant’s explanation that she did not see her caring work as a job. The Registrant declared her income to the tax authorities, giving the name of Service User A as her employer. The Panel concluded that the Registrant understood that she was employed by Service User A. In the Panel’s judgment the failure to declare her secondary employment was sufficiently serious as to constitute misconduct.

53. The Registrant’s dishonest failure to disclose her role as paid carer to the Direct Payments Team is serious. The Panel has found that the Registrant was motivated by her own interests in ensuring that there was no scrutiny of the arrangements. Dishonesty is a breach of a fundamental tenet of the profession.

54. The Registrant’s actions in accessing the records of Service User A and Service User B were a serious breach of confidentiality. As a Social Worker the Registrant was aware of the importance of maintaining the confidentiality of service user information. She accessed the records repeatedly, despite knowing that she should not do so. She was fully aware of the relevant data protection policies. The Panel considered that the Registrant’s explanation that she was concerned about her relatives was no excuse for her behaviour. If she had concerns about the care provided to her relatives there were other steps she could have taken to raise them through the appropriate channels. The repeated accessing of the records without good reason is a serious falling short of the standards expected of a Social Worker and is sufficiently serious to constitute misconduct.

55. The Registrant’s conduct was a breach of the HCPC Standards of Conduct, Performance, and Ethics (2012), Standards 2, 3, 7 and 13:

2 You must respect the confidentiality of service users.

3 You must keep high standards of personal conduct.

7 You must communicate properly and effectively with service users and other practitioners.

13 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.

56. The Panel found that the Registrant’s conduct in particulars 1, 2, 3, 5, and 6 was sufficiently serious as to constitute misconduct.

Decision on Impairment

57. The Panel applied the guidance in the HCPTS Practice Note “Finding that Fitness to Practise is ‘Impaired’” and accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor. The Panel considered the Registrant’s fitness to practise at today’s date.

58. The Panel first considered the personal component, which is the Registrant’s current competence and behaviour. The Panel has no information about the Registrant’s current circumstances.

59. In the Panel’s view the Registrant’s conduct is not easily remediable, particularly because it includes a finding of dishonesty. There is no evidence that the Registrant has taken any steps to remediate her past misconduct.

60. The Registrant has not demonstrated insight. Although she made some admissions to LB, she has put forward explanations and excuses to the Panel which the Panel has not accepted. She has not demonstrated insight into the impact of her behaviour on her employer or the profession.

61. The Panel concluded that there is a high risk of repetition of similar misconduct.

62. The Panel did not identify any public safety issues in this case. The Panel did not find that the Registrant has in the past put service users at risk of harm or that she was liable in the future to put service users at risk of harm.

63. However, the Panel considered that wider public interest considerations, particularly the need to maintain confidence in the profession and regulatory process, are engaged. The Panel has found that there is a risk of repetition of similar misconduct. Therefore there is a risk that in the future the Registrant will bring the profession into disrepute, and that she will act dishonestly, which is a breach of a fundamental tenet of the profession.

64. The Panel considered whether members of the public would be concerned if the Registrant was free to practise without restriction. In the Panel’s view members of the public expect Social Workers to be honest, they expect them to be open and transparent where there is a conflict of interest, and they expect them to maintain the confidentiality of service user records. Members of the public would expect a finding of impairment where the Panel has made findings that there is a high risk of repetition of such misconduct. The Panel therefore decided that a finding that the Registrant’s fitness to practise is impaired is necessary to maintain confidence in the profession and the regulatory process.

65. The Panel found that the Registrant’s fitness to practise is impaired, at today’s date, considering both the personal component and the public component.

Decision on Sanction

66. The Panel accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor and applied the guidance in the HCPC Indicative Sanctions Policy (ISP). The purpose of a sanction is not to punish the Registrant, though it may have that effect. The purpose of a sanction is to protect the public. The Panel should also give appropriate weight to the wider public interest, which includes the deterrent effect to other registrants and the need to maintain public confidence in the profession and the regulatory process.

67. The Panel applied the principle of proportionality, balancing the Registrant’s interests against the public interest.

68. The Panel identified the following aggravating circumstances:

• the Registrant implicated her colleagues AS and JB;

• the Registrant’s initial denials and provision of misleading information to her manager;

• repeated breaches of confidentiality over a lengthy period of time;

• the dishonesty involved a breach of trust placed in the Registrant by her employer.

69. The Panel identified the following mitigating circumstances:

• the Registrant’s previous unblemished record and the absence of concerns about her social work practice;

• no harm to service users;

• admissions to the employer of some of the particulars;

70. The Panel accepted the advice of the Legal Assessor and carefully considered the nature of the dishonesty in this case and where it fell on the scale of seriousness. The Panel took into account case law guidance in Tait v Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons [2003] UKPC 34, Parkinson v NMC [2010] EWHC 1898, Hassan v GOC [2013] EWHC 1887 and Lusigna v NMC [2017] EWHC 1458. In the judgment of the Panel the dishonesty in this case was at the lower end of the scale. Most importantly, the dishonesty did not involve harm to service users. The potential harm was to the Registrant’s employer. The Registrant concealed her actions as she did not wish her employer to scrutinise her secondary employment.

71. In the Panel’s judgment, the finding of current impairment in this case does not involve public safety. The purpose of a sanction is therefore to address the wider public interest which includes the deterrent effect to other registrants, the reputation of the profession and public confidence in the regulatory process.

72. The Panel considered the sanctions in ascending order of severity. The Panel decided that taking no action, mediation or a Caution Order would be insufficient to mark the seriousness of the Registrant’s conduct. This is particularly the case taking into account the dishonesty, repeated breaches of confidentiality and the high risk of repetition of similar misconduct.

73. The Panel next considered a Conditions of Practice Order. The Panel’s view was that although remediation would be difficult, the matters are capable of correction. There is no evidence of a barrier which would prevent the Registrant from remedying the misconduct. However, the Panel decided that appropriate and verifiable conditions cannot be formulated. The Registrant has not engaged in the hearing and the Panel does not have sufficient confidence that she will comply with conditions.

74. The ISP guidance is that a Conditions of Practice Order is unlikely to be suitable where the Registrant has failed to engage in the fitness to practise process, where there are serious or persistent overall failings, and where the case involves dishonesty. In the Panel’s judgment all these circumstances applied. The Registrant engaged with the HCPC at an early stage of the process, but she has not engaged with this hearing. The failings of the Registrant were serious and they persisted over a period of time.

75. The Panel decided that conditions of practice are not suitable and would not be sufficient to address the public interest considerations.

76. The Panel next considered the most serious sanctions of a Suspension Order or a Striking Off Order. The Panel noted that striking off can be the appropriate sanction for deliberate acts involving a breach of trust such as dishonesty. A suspension order can be the appropriate order where there are no psychological difficulties or other difficulties preventing the Registrant from understanding and seeking to remedy the failings. There is no evidence that suggests that there are such difficulties in this case.

77. In deciding on the appropriate and proportionate sanction, the Panel considered the Registrant’s interests. Although the Registrant has not engaged with the HCPC, she may continue to have an interest in practising as a social worker. The Panel also took into account the public interest in the safe return to practice of a competent social worker.

78. In deciding on the appropriate sanction, the Panel considered whether the lesser sanction of a Suspension Order would be sufficient to address the wider public interest considerations, given the nature and seriousness of the findings in this case. The Panel’s view was that a Suspension Order was sufficient. Although any finding of dishonesty is serious, the dishonesty in this case is at the lower end of the scale. Members of the public would recognise that this case does not involve an ongoing risk to members of the public. There is also public interest in the rehabilitation of the Registrant, if the risk of repetition can be reduced to an acceptable level. A Suspension Order is a sanction which has serious consequences for the Registrant and it has a significant deterrent effect to other registrants.

79. The Panel therefore decided that there was a prospect that the Registrant could remediate her past misconduct. The first step in that process would require her to engage with the HCPC and to demonstrate to a Review Panel her understanding of the seriousness of her past misconduct and her willingness to take the necessary remedial steps.

80. The Panel carefully considered whether a Suspension Order would be sufficient to mark the seriousness of the Registrant’s misconduct, taking into account the wider public interest considerations. The Panel decided that a Suspension Order would have a sufficient deterrent effect and would be sufficient to maintain confidence in the profession and the regulatory process. Members of the public would recognise that the Panel has taken into account all the circumstances, including the prospect that the Registrant might engage with the HCPC in a process which would remediate her past misconduct.

81. The Panel gave serious consideration to the sanction of last resort of a Striking Off Order, but decided that it would be disproportionate. The Panel took into account all the factors considered above.

82. The Panel decided that the appropriate and proportionate sanction is a Suspension Order.

83. The Panel considered the appropriate length for the Suspension Order and decided that it should be the maximum period of 12 months. The maximum period is appropriate in this case to mark the seriousness of the Registrant’s conduct.

84. The Suspension Order will be reviewed before it expires. A reviewing Panel may be assisted by:

• the Registrant’s attendance at the review hearing;

• evidence from the Registrant of her reflection on the allegation and the decision of the Panel;

• references or testimonials relating to any employment or voluntary position undertaken by the Registrant;

• evidence that the Registrant has kept her knowledge and skills up to date e.g. Continuing Professional Development.

Order

The Registrar is directed to suspend the name of Mrs Paula Bailey from the Register for a period of 12 months from the date this order takes effect.

Notes

The order imposed today will apply from 27 September 2017 (the operative date).

This order will be reviewed again before its expiry on 27 September 2018.

Hearing history

History of Hearings for Paula Bailey

Date Panel Hearing type Outcomes / Status
29/08/2017 Conduct and Competence Committee Final Hearing Suspended
06/02/2017 Conduct and Competence Committee Final Hearing Adjourned