Skip to content

Regulations in the healthcare sector are in place to keep us all safe and protected. But what happens when things go wrong?

Our expert health and regulatory team has extensive experience acting for regulators in the sector, as well as acting for those organisations and practitioners who are regulated.

This is a specialist area of legal practise and our regulatory specialists provide advice to assist regulators on the complex issues they face, as well as those subject to regulation. Our work covers a range of issues, including giving policy advice, auditing, Judicial Review and appeals, as well as tribunal advocacy and bespoke training.

We have particular expertise in ‘fitness to practise’ services and offer support through the entire process, from reviewing concerns and preparing an investigation plan, through to interviewing witnesses and presenting cases at hearings.

Whatever your needs, we have many years of experience in this specialist area, and our expert team is here and ready to help.

Work we have done
  • Providing regulatory and fitness to practise advice to the General Osteopathic Council. We represent GOsC in relation to their hearings before its Professional Conduct Committee. This involves advising on the scope of investigations and the drafting of Allegations, drafting skeleton arguments, advising on the content of hearing bundles and on the merits of postponement applications and carrying out advocacy at hearings.
  • Acting as Legal Adviser to Social Work England in hearings.
  • Providing general regulatory expertise and reports for investigation committees to the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy.
  • Acting for a regulator where enforcement action has been taken in respect of a provider where there has been a falling short in relation to the regulatory requirements and that decision has been appealed to the First-tier Tribunal. Our task is to:
    • Consider the merits of the appeal and highlight any weaknesses in the application of the regulatory framework by our client
    • Draft the formal response to the appeal
    • Deal with any procedural case management hearings
    • Prepare witness statements
    • Collate the necessary evidence that needs exhibiting (often this is in the form of medical records)
    • Prepare hearing bundles
    • Draft case summaries
    • Draft skeleton arguments
    • Represent our client in contested hearings in the First-tier Tribunal (often lasting several days).
  • Acting for a regulator in respect of a complex judicial review arising out of a decision to carry out an investigation into a complaint.
  • Advising one of the largest UK healthcare regulators in respect of judicial review matters at the pre-action stage and once proceedings had been issued. This has involved careful scrutiny of the regulator’s regulatory framework, guidance documents and internal policies
  • Advising a regulator on its statutory power to review its own decisions to take no further action in respect of a complaint against a registrant
  • Rachel Birks sits as Legally Qualified Chair at the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service. She chairs fitness to practise panels and gives legal advice on a variety of regulatory legal issues such as:
    • Dishonesty
    • Submissions of no case to answer
    • Good character
    • Service and proceeding in absence

Contact a specialist

Rachel Birks

Partner | Regulatory

+44 (0) 330 137 3267

+44 (0) 771 279 0510

Email Rachel Birks

Read bio

Neil Smart

Managing Associate | Healthcare

+44 (0) 330 137 3396

+44 (0) 773 268 8249

Email Neil

Read bio

Fameeda Shafiq

Managing Associate | Regulatory

+44 (0) 330 137 3269

+44 (0) 780 934 2452

Email Fameeda Shafiq

Read bio

Meet the whole team

What we're thinking