Error Made Allowing UK Psychiatrist Shekhar Chandra Back on Register, Says Appeal Court

August 14, 2018

A medical practitioners’ tribunal that let struck-off psychiatrist Shekhar Chandra back onto the UK medical register made “an error of principle” in the way it made the decision, three Court of Appeal judges have ruled unanimously. He was struck off the UK medical register in 2008 for sexual misconduct with a patient and for dishonesty.
The tribunal had “applied the wrong test” when it restored Shekhar Chandra to the register, the judges held. It had relied almost exclusively on the issue of whether he had remediated his behaviour and failed properly to understand the central importance of the need to maintain public confidence and professional standards.
At the fitness to practice hearing, and during an High Court appeal against his striking off, he maintained that the patient was a stalker and that her evidence was dishonest, when this was untrue. Later the tribunal claimed Chandra had “gained substantial understanding in regard to the proper boundaries and relationships with patients” and that he was now fit to practise.
Lady Justice King said that the tribunal should have first considered remediation against the backdrop of the matters that led to it. Having made positive findings, it should then have gone on to balance those findings against the requirement to promote and maintain public confidence and proper professional standards.
A further hearing is due to take place in October to decide whether the case should be sent back to the same tribunal or to a different panel. In the meantime, Chandra remains on the register and can continue to work as a doctor.
Source: "Tribunal Made Error in Allowing Psychiatrist Back on Register, Says Appeal Court", BMJ, 14 Aug 2018,


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