As part of the GCCs ongoing commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI), the GCC recently completed a thematic review on the Fitness to Practise (FtP) process – checking if the current processes are fair, non-biased, and non-discriminatory. The data set analysed was taken from a random pool of FtP cases between 2019-2022 and sought to establish whether there were any fundamental issues of fairness with the FtP system and any links between EDI issues and complaints against registrants.
Analysis of the data set available revealed some interesting findings regarding the nature of complaints against chiropractors:
- Complaints made against male registrants accounted for 93% of cases (though males are only 50% of practising registrants), with 55% of these complaints coming from female complainants.
- Patients who were pregnant or had a disability were over-represented in complaints that related to clinical aspects of care (such as treatment plans as opposed to issues with advertising or similar).
- The makeup of FtP committees lacked diversity.
There were several areas of good practice identified including the positive effects of online hearings during the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in greater engagement in the FtP process throughout 2020.
The GCC is already taking action following the results of this review, such as seeking to diversify our Investigating Committees - find out more about our recruitment campaign for the Investigating Committees.
The thematic review has also identified a number of areas for further development within the FtP process to improve the overall process and ensure it is accessible for all, these developments will align with our ongoing commitment to improving our EDI activities alongside our 15-point Action Plan.