Deans Court Chambers

Professional Discipline Department

The Regions (Bar)
Current View:

This content is provided by Chambers. Learn more about our methodology

Possesses deep experience in the disciplinary proceedings of the GMC. The barristers have a strong practice in prosecuting and defending inviduals accused of serious misconduct, from allegations of dishonesty through to sexual wrongdoing and unethical research or practice. The set is also home to barristers who have notable expertise in related inquests. It is considered to be an "excellent chambers, which always goes the extra mile."

Client service: "The clerks are very professional and have a quick turnaround for instructions." Matthew Gibbons is senior clerk.

Elizabeth Dudley-Jones
Has a broad professional discipline practice, with a notable focus on handling cases concerning medical and healthcare law, involving issues such as misconduct, dishonesty and clinical failings. She regularly prosecutes cases for the GMC, including several cases before the Fitness to Practise Panel.
Strengths: "Impressive" and "highly thought of by the GMC."
Recent work: Prosecuted a senior general practitioner for sexually inappropriate contact in consultations with a patient who was struggling with her mental health. He then initiated a sexual relationship with her that lasted two years.

Mary O'Rourke QC
Has a highly regarded professional discipline practice with a focus on the defence of doctors in matters before the GMC and other disciplinary bodies. She is admired for her advocacy in high-profile, complex cases, including judicial reviews and Administrative Court trials.
Strengths: "She commands the respect of her audience. Her communication skills are very good and she is highly approachable, despite her level of practice. We feel confident introducing clients to her." "Very clever and robust, and considers every argument."
Recent work: Appeared in the unusual Court of Appeal case of Dr Chandra, which was the GMC's second appeal against his restoration to the register.

Peter Atherton
Gains regular instruction from the GMC in medical tribunal cases, drawing on his wealth of experience handling civil and criminal cases when acting in court. He is also skilled at handling inquests concerning deprivation of liberty cases and Human Rights Act applications, among other matters.
Strengths: "Excellent experience, good knowledge and a great manner with clients."
Recent work: Acted for the GMC in proceedings involving a doctor who was accused of undertaking genetic or genomic investigations and providing treatments not supported by sound scientific evidence, specifically by prescribing thyroid hormone treatment to patients who had no evidence of hypothyroidism.

Robin Kitching
Known for his work for the GMC on sensitive and high-profile cases, with expertise in handling fitness to practise cases. He handles professional discipline matters as part of a broader practice that also encompasses criminal law work.
Strengths: "He has good judgement and is understated and efficient - he just gets on with things."

Rosalind Emsley-Smith
An advocate who uses her broad experience in criminal law to good effect in disciplinary cases in the healthcare sector. She regularly acts for the GMC and has a wide knowledge of the MPTS, with a particular focus on fitness to practise hearings and reviews of fitness to practise hearings.
Strengths: "Very experienced and good on her feet."
Recent work: Acted in a case involving a serious allegation of dishonesty on the part of a doctor who allegedly pretended to find a needle that had been dropped on the floor during the course of a procedure.

Sophie Cartwright
Experienced prosecutor on behalf of the GMC, also handling high-profile public inquiry police cases. Her professional discipline practice also takes in the representation of regulated professionals and organisations.
Strengths: "Her key strength is the level of support she provides and her empathy for those she is representing."