The Belfast Telegraph today reports that Dr Michael Watt, the doctor at the centre of hundreds allegations of substandard medical care, will no longer face allegations of a lack of fitness to practise, having successfully applied for removal from the medical register.
The reasons for the decision have not been publicised, the decision have been made in private by the Medical Practitioner’s Tribunal Service. The General Medical Council, Dr Watt’s professional regulator, expressed disappointment noting “…we felt it was in the public interest for the allegations to be heard by the tribunal in an open and transparent way”.
That significantly understates the widespread dissatisfaction being expressed by harmed patients and their next of kin. Having been denied the opportunity to participate meaningfully in an inquiry, conducted in a public forum, those most affected by his conduct had pinned their hopes on the Regulator getting to grips with the impugned Doctor’s clinical conduct. That means of redress having now closed, patients will be left wondering when, if ever, they will get answers to the questions they have raised in relation to their experience.