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Sat, 20 Oct 2018 | Review by: Phillip T
REGULATIONS AND REGULATORS:
AN AUTHORITATIVE GUIDE TO PREPARATION, PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – NOW IN A NEW EDITION FROM THE LEGAL ACTION GROUP
An appreciation by Elizabeth Robson Taylor of Richmond Green Chambers and Phillip Taylor MBE, Head of Chambers
and Reviews Editor, “The Barrister”
Once again, the Legal Action Group (LAG) continues to excel in producing legal texts that are accessible and readable, as well as thorough and authoritative. This new second edition of ‘Professional Discipline and Healthcare Regulators: A Legal Handbook’ is one such example.
Because of the complexity and sensitivity of the subject matter, this is necessarily a reasonably weighty tome, but handy nonetheless in paperback format. It’s affordable too -- and therefore useful for lay readers, including healthcare professionals as well as lawyers. Indeed, anyone involved in, or likely to be involved in regulatory proceedings will benefit from it.
The two editors, Jon Whitfield QC and Gemma Hobcraft, have headed an expert group of contributors, all members of the professional and regulatory team from Doughty Street Chambers. The result is a practical handbook which sets out the preparation, practice and procedure for hearing before six professional regulators and here’s the list: General Medical Council (GMC)… the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)… the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)… the General Dental Council (GDC)… the General Optical Council (GOC)… and the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC).
This is an indisputably wide range of professional practitioners regulated by regulators. The HCPC alone regulates no less than sixteen health and care professions, from biomedical scientists to social workers (in England and Wales), physiotherapists, speech and language therapists and hearing aid dispensers.
Not surprisingly, reference is made to the dizzying number of regulations and regulators in the book’s introductory section, which discusses the changing face of healthcare regulation, including, for example, the consultation by the Department of Health in 2017 on the future of professional regulation. Questions have been raised, say the editors, about the need to examine which professions need to be regulated on a statutory footing…and that ‘consideration may need to be given to reducing the number of regulators.’
As is to be expected, this second edition updates the first and incorporates the changes that have taken place during the past six years in this area of law, including – to cite only one example –the right of appeal against tribunal decisions. See the chapters, new to this edition, on appeals and judicial review and on the General Pharmaceutical Council.
Carefully researched and footnoted, this Handbook of almost 700 pages contains a wealth of research references and any amount of practical advice, including step by step guidance on preparation and practice, with ‘tips and tactics for effective representation at all stages of proceedings’. As such, it is apparently ‘the only claimant-focused guide to this area of law,’ and therefore an indispensable addition to the well-stocked practitioner library.
The publication date is cited as at 30th March 2018.
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