West London Mental Health NHS Trust v Chhabra: SC 18 Dec 2013

The trust sought to begin disciplinary proceedings against the claimant, a consultant forensic psychologist alleging gross misconduct. She was said to have left confidential patient records on a train.
Held: Gross misconduct should be conduct which would involve a repudiatory breach of contract – namely conduct undermining trust and confidence which is inherent in the particular contract of employment such that the employer should no longer be required to retain the employee in his employment. he conduct would need to be so serious as to potentially make any further relationship and trust between the employer and employee impossible.
Lord Hodge explained how, by the Directions on Disciplinary Procedures 2005 issued pursuant to powers under s.17 of the 1977 Act. the Secretary of State for Health directed all NHS bodies in England and Wales to implement the full version of a framework policy agreed between the BMA and the Department of Health in a document entitled ‘Maintaining High Professional Standards in the Modern NHS’.
‘As a general rule it is not appropriate for the courts to intervene to remedy minor irregularities in the course of disciplinary proceedings between employer and employee – its role is not the ‘micro-management’ of such proceeding’

Lady Hale, Deputy President, Lord Kerr Lord Reed, Lord Hughes, Lord Hodge
[2013] UKSC 80, [2014] ICR 194, [2014] 1 All ER 943, [2014] Med LR 111, [2014] IRLR 227, [2013] WLR(D) 504, (2014) 136 BMLR 1, UKSC 2013/0046
Bailii, WLRD, Bailii Summary, SC, SC Summary
National Health Service Act 1977 17
England and Wales
CitedSociete Generale, London Branch v Geys SC 19-Dec-2012
The claimant’s employment by the bank had been terminated. The parties disputed the sums due, and the date of the termination of the contract. The court was asked ‘Does a repudiation of a contract of employment by the employer which takes the form . .
At first instanceChhabra v West London Mental Health NHS QBD 1-Jun-2012
The claimant, a consultant forensic psychiatrist sought to restrain the defendants from going ahead with disciplinary proceedings as to alleged breaches of patient confidentiality.
Held: The application succeeded. The complaint was properly as . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Employment, Health Professions

Updated: 04 January 2022; Ref: scu.552330