Medical Council critic running in elections

By Mindo - 20th Feb 2018 | 85 views

Dr De Brun confirmed to <strong><em>MI </em></strong>that he would be a candidate and had sent in his nomination papers. 

In September, Dr De Brun spoke to <strong><em>MI </em></strong>about his refusal to submit to a Council performance assessment after the regulator had closed an investigation arising from a patient complaint, finding that he had no case to answer. 

In the interview, Dr De Brun said he was “completely floored” when the Council sent him literature on what was involved in a performance assessment. In his view, the process appeared to be “way more invasive” than the complaint investigation phase, which was at that point closed without requiring referral to the Fitness to Practise (FTP) committee. 

Eventually, Dr De Brun was brought to an FTP inquiry arising from his refusal to submit to a performance assessment, but there were no findings issued against him. 

Dr De Brun contested the last Council elections in 2013, although on that occasion he only received 39 votes in a total poll of 2,883 in his category. 

Commenting on his decision to run this year, Dr De Brun told <strong><em>MI </em></strong>the Medical Council “in its present form” represents “a danger to the health and wellbeing” of doctors and patients. 

“As a consequence of former Minister [Mary] Harney’s 2007 [Medical Practitioners] Act, doctors and patients are suffering. The predator/prey relationship between the Irish Medical Council and doctors has significantly increased the practise of defensive medicine in every discipline. This has placed an enormous burden upon the health service in respect of testing and waiting lists. It has resulted in the needless destruction of doctors’ reputations and of public confidence in the profession as a whole. The 2007 Act must be repealed and the Irish Medical Council must be subject to accountability and reform.” 

Meanwhile, Dr Audrey Dillon — elected in 2013 in the NCHD category and who served as Council Vice President until last year — confirmed to <strong><em>MI </em></strong>she would not be running again this year. 

Six members of the Council are elected by registered medical practitioners, five are appointed by the Minister for Health, one is appointed by the Minister for Education and the remaining 13 are appointed by a number of nominating bodies. 

The closing date for receipt of nomination papers was last Friday, 16 February. 

Electronic voting opens from noon on Thursday, 1 March and closes at 12 noon on Thursday, 21 March 2018. 

The new Council will begin its term on 1 June 2018. The current Council and committees remain in place until 31 May 2018.

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