A doctor in Londonderry, Dr. Anne McCloskey, has faced a further suspension of six months due to her misuse of her position to contradict the public health message on Coronavirus.
Previously, Dr. McCloskey had been suspended by the General Medical Council (GMC) for comments she made regarding the Covid-19 vaccination. A medical tribunal, convened in Manchester, has now extended this suspension, concluding that her actions were below the expected standards of a doctor and amounted to misconduct.
Dr. McCloskey was absent from the hearing of the Medical Practitioners’ Tribunal Service. This tribunal addresses cases involving doctors where serious concerns have been raised about their fitness to practice by the GMC.
In August 2021, Dr. McCloskey voiced her apprehensions in a social media video regarding young people receiving Covid vaccines. She alleged that young individuals were being coerced, bullied, and pressured into getting vaccinated. Following her remarks, several complaints were lodged, leading to her suspension.
The tribunal determined that Dr. McCloskey’s conduct did not meet the expected standards of a registered doctor and constituted serious misconduct. This was especially critical as her comments were made during a period when the general public was particularly susceptible due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, emphasized tribunal chair Becky Miller.
“Dr. McCloskey was not merely offering guidance and information to the public. Given the inflammatory language she employed, Dr. McCloskey was causing distress and imposing her viewpoint on the general public.”
While Dr. McCloskey was not present at the hearing, she contended that she was a victim of a conspiracy. Earlier in the year, she initiated a legal challenge against her suspension. In June, she informed the High Court that over 20,000 individuals had signed an online petition calling for her reinstatement. At the time, she argued that her professional reputation had been unjustly tarnished and alleged collusion between individuals within the medical field and government entities against her.
The tribunal acknowledged Dr. McCloskey’s 40 years of service as a doctor without any prior instances of misconduct.