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DAVID SOUTHALL v GENERAL MEDICAL COUNCIL

he Fitness to Practice Panel of the General Medical Council had been entitled to find a consultant paediatrician guilty of serious professional misconduct following his interview of a patient's mother at which he accused her of murdering her first son who had been found to have committed suicide.

9 June 2009

The appellant consultant paediatrician (S) appealed against the finding of the Fitness to Practice Panel of the General Medical Council that he was guilty of serious professional misconduct and the erasure of his name from the register of medical practitioners. S had acted as an expert in child protection cases. The first allegation against S related to a letter that he had sent to an unnamed consultant paediatrician at a hospital which was in the locality of a child who he was treating. S had concerns as to the child's parents and accordingly sent a letter, containing allegations about the parents, to those who might treat the child in the future. It was alleged that considerations which would justify overriding patient confidentiality when corresponding with named physicians did not exist when corresponding with unnamed physicians. The second allegation concerned S's practice of maintaining special cases files on children he was treating when there were child protection concerns. ...

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