The General Pharmaceutical Council is planning a 12-week public consultation on proposed permanent changes to its rules to allow remote hearings.
During the Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns most fitness-to-practice hearings were undertaken by videolink. This proved successful in many ways, the GPhC says, with increased registrant engagement with the hearing process and largely positive feedback from participants.
This has persuaded the regulator to make permanent changes to its rules to allow greater flexibility in undertaking meetings and hearings. However, it acknowledges that some hearings are more suitable than others to be held remotely, and the consultation will help guide it “on questions of suitability”.
The consultation will also focus on any impact on individuals or groups sharing any of the protected characteristics in the Equality Act 2010.
Assuming the consultation is approved at the GPhC’s council meeting on October 7, it will get underway on November 1 and conclude by January 24, 2022.