Crutch claim surgeon's grievances undermined staff, panel rules

A surgeon demanded £2m compensation from a hospital after claiming his crutches had been "sabotaged" by a colleague, a tribunal has been told.

Ghulam Malik's grievance claim was one of 27 he raised against colleagues at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth that have been ruled to be unsubstantiated.

The Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service ruled the claims undermined working relationships.

The hearing will decide later if Dr Malik's actions constituted misconduct.

If so, he could be struck off the medical register, suspended or have restrictions placed on his work.

The tribunal was told Dr Malik was first employed by Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust in 2005.

'Conspiracy' claim

He brought "the first of a number of formal grievances" against members of the cardiothoracic department in 2008, of which 27 were identified by the GMC as having been raised without any evidence to substantiate them.

In September 2010 he claimed he had "almost" fallen after his crutches were deliberately tampered with outside an operating theatre.

His grievance claim said: "After finishing theatre, I took my both crutches and put my weight on them as usual and I almost fell to the floor.

"I examined the crutches and found that somebody had removed/dislocate the latches of both crutches which made them to collapse under weight (sic)."

Other grievances included claims of bullying, discrimination, racism and a "conspiracy" to have his employment terminated and have him removed from the UK.

The tribunal panel ruled the numerous grievances had undermined effective working relationships within the hospital's cardiothoracic team.

It also found Dr Malik failed to carry or responded to his contact bleep, had failed to attend three meetings during the trust's investigation and disciplinary hearing and did not respond to GMC correspondence during its investigation.

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