An investigation by the Care Quality Commission revealed 67 doctors from private and NHS clinics had signed blank forms allowing women to have abortions. The doctors illegally signed blank abortion forms for women they had never met.
For an abortion to be carried out, authorisation from two doctors must be given by way of a signed form if they agree that the pregnancy could risk the physical or mental health of the woman or her unborn child. It is advised that at least one of the doctors sees the woman and both should have access to her medical notes to have a full understanding of the woman’s medical history.
The doctors were all identified by the Care Quality Commission in 2012 and consequently referred to the General Medical Council. However, none of the doctors referred will be brought before a hearing where they could be suspended or struck off.
By Francesca Snape, graduate paralegal in the professional discipline team
If you are a doctor and you are under investigation by your employer, or any other organisation, it is important that you seek legal advice as early as possible to safeguard your practise. Our team of professional discipline solicitors defend doctors at all stages of proceedings and we deal with a wide variety of cases, including registration issues, allegations of deficient professional performance, criminal convictions and allegations of serious professional misconduct. We have considerable experience of successfully defending doctors and pride ourselves on achieving the best possible results for our clients.