NMC Fitness to Practise Hearings—the impairment stage
Produced in partnership with John Donnelly and Sam Shurey of 2 Bedford Row
NMC Fitness to Practise Hearings—the impairment stage

The following Corporate Crime guidance note Produced in partnership with John Donnelly and Sam Shurey of 2 Bedford Row provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • NMC Fitness to Practise Hearings—the impairment stage
  • The impairment stage
  • Impairment stage—order of proceedings
  • Insight
  • Additional considerations for competence cases
  • Additional considerations for health cases
  • Notice of decision
  • Appeals
  • Costs

The impairment stage

Following the conclusion of the factual stage of the Fitness to Practise (FTP) Hearing process, the committee panel may move on to the impairment stage. The panel must engage in a two stage process: it must first consider whether, on the facts found proved, the registrant’s actions amounted to misconduct; and second, if so, whether the registrant’s FTP is currently impaired by reason of that misconduct.

There is no statutory definition of misconduct, nor is it defined in the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) rules. The case law provides the following assistance:

  1. in Roylance v General Medical Council (No 2), Lord Clyde stated:

    ‘Misconduct is a word of general effect, involving some act or omission which falls short of what would be proper in the circumstances. The standard of propriety may often be found by reference to the rules and standards ordinarily required to be followed by a medical practitioner in the particular circumstances… Secondly the misconduct is qualified by the word ‘serious’. It is not any professional misconduct which will qualify…’

  2. in Nandi v General Medical Council, Collins J stated:

    ‘…The adjective serious must be given its proper weight, and in other contexts there has been reference to conduct which would be regarded as deplorable by fellow practitioners, it is of course possible for negligent conduct to amount