A renowned cardiologist, who worked at Great Ormond Street children’s hospital from 2001 - 2010, was struck off the medical register last week following a fitness to practice hearing at the Medical Practitioner’s Tribunal Service (MPTS).
The cardiologist, Philipp Bonhoeffer, was found to have behaved inappropriately with young boys whilst he was working at a hospital in Paris between 1995 and 1997 and during charity work in Kenya between 1993 and 2008. The MPTS panel made a finding that he had “persistently exploited vulnerable young boys and young men over an extended period of time with sexual motivation” and as a result, his fitness to practice was impaired by reason of misconduct.
The panel stated that his conduct was “calculated, deplorable and an abuse of his special position of trust," and was “not merely unacceptable - it was fundamentally incompatible with continued medical registration."
Following the hearing, Niall Dickson, the Chief Executive of the GMC, stated that, “We asked for Prof Bonhoeffer to be removed from the register as the best way of protecting the public following our investigation into the very serious allegations of inappropriate and sexually motivated conduct with children... As with all sanctions following a fitness to practice hearing, we will also be informing every medical regulatory authority in the world of this decision."
A statement from the professor's lawyers, reported on BBC Online, said he maintained his denial of the allegations. It said: "He has no intention of resuming the practice of medicine in the United Kingdom.
"He no longer has any confidence in the fairness of the process or, given the history of the case, that the proceedings will be concluded in a timely way."
Our team of expert fitness to practice solicitors regularly defend a range of professionals before their regulatory bodies and have a very high success rate of avoiding striking off orders. If you have been made subject to fitness to practice proceedings, you can call us now on 0845 00 20736.
By Laura Hannah