Committees of Inquiry

Where it has been decided that there is sufficient cause to warrant further action in relation to a complaint, the Preliminary Proceedings Committee may, under Section 40 of the Pharmacy Act 2007, refer a complaint to to either one of the following Committees of Inquiry:

(i)  Professional Conduct Committee

(ii) Health Committee

If a decision is made to hold an Inquiry in relation to a complaint, it will normally take place within six months and the choice of committee will depend on the nature of the complaint.

Complaints which concern matters of professional misconduct or poor professional performance will normally be referred to the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC). Inquiries conducted by the PCC will normally be held in public.

Complaints which concern impairment of a pharmacist’s ability to practise because of a physical or mental ailment, emotional disturbance or addiction to alcohol or drugs will normally be referred to the Health Committee. Inquiries conducted by the Health Committee will normally be held in private.

Committees of Inquiry have all of the powers, rights, privileges and duties of the High Court or a Judge of the High Court that relate to:

  • Enforcing the attendance of witnesses,
  • Examining witnesses on oath or otherwise,
  • Compelling the production or inspection of records or other documents or property, and
  • Awarding and authorising the recovery of costs.

A witness before a committee of Inquiry has the same immunities and privileges as a witness before the High Court.

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