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Sunday, 21 September 2014

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North Cumbrian GP suspended after alleged incident

A family doctor from a practice that has been criticised for its poor hygiene standards has been suspended following an alleged incident.

Dalston GP practice photo
The practice in Dalston

Dr Martin Richard John, of Dalston Medical Group near Carlisle, had his right to practice medicine suspended on June 25, according to the records from the General Medical Council (GMC).

The dramatic development comes just a week after the Care Quality Commission (CQC) watchdog published critical findings of its inspection there in May.

Natalie Taylor, who recently took over as practice manager at the surgery, said: “Dr John is temporarily not working at the practice while an investigation is conducted into an alleged incident in which he was implicated.

“This is a precautionary measure to protect everybody concerned.”

She stressed that the suspension is a neutral act that does not imply any judgement about the allegation or any person.

The investigation is being carried out by NHS England, which oversees the work of GPs.

Dr Mike Prentice, its medical director for Cumbria, said: “We can confirm a Carlisle GP has been suspended from practice while GMC and police investigations are ongoing. The suspension is not affecting patients’ access to GP appointments in the area.”

Ms Taylor added that the suspension and the alleged incident are not connected to a previous allegation which led to Dr John being suspended for several months last year.

In December 2013, the doctor was allowed to return to work at the Dalston practice but under strict conditions laid down by the GMC.

The recent CQC inspection found the practice was dirty, with concerns about medicines not being accounted for and a nurse wrongly giving a patient a vaccine. A patient had to wait five weeks for medication which their hospital consultant said they needed immediately.

In a statement, the practice stressed that the doctors were found to be providing good care and treatment. All the problems happened under a previous management team.

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