A medical tribunal will next week consider whether to lift the suspension of a former top children’s doctor at Leeds General Infirmary who admitted taking cocaine before an on-call shift.
Consultant paediatric neurologist Colin Ferrie was suspended from practising as a doctor after he was caught on camera taking the drug in a sting by the Mail on Sunday newspaper in 2015.
He resigned from Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust when the allegations came to light and was later given a conditional discharge by the city’s magistrates after pleading guilty to possession of a class A drug.
In October last year, the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service handed him a four-month suspension after a hearing in which he also admitted to being uncontactable during the on-call shift.
The panel ruled his actions had amounted to “serious misconduct” and a “serious breach” of trust in him and in the profession.
But they decided on the short-term suspension after considering mitigating factors including “no evidence of repetition since the incident” and “clear and compelling evidence of Dr Ferrie’s insight; he does not pose a significant risk of repeating his behaviour”.
It also took into account “his evidence that he was deeply ashamed and that it was his fault entirely”.
The tribunal added that a review hearing would take place before the suspension period ends on March 13.
This is now scheduled to be held next week, when a panel will consider whether to take any further action or reinstate him to the medical register.
Ferrie was one of the country’s leading experts on childhood epilepsy and had practised in Leeds for 20 years before his suspension.