Fitness to Practise Webinar

31 May 202410:00am - 3:00pm
  • Professional Practice
£15 Members / £30 Non-Members
A group of people in discussion
Online workshop


This session will provide a comprehensive exploration of contemporary Fitness to Practice issues, bringing together regulators, trade unions, a legal expert, and a psychologist with lived experience.

Discussions will explore FTP from initial complaint-to a full hearing, the role of the Professional Standards Authority, trade union and professional indemnity reps.

A Partner from Keystone Law will provide an insight from a legal perspective. There will also be an opportunity to learn from the FTP experiences from a registrant.

The webinar aspires to equip psychologists registered with the HCPC with insights and recommendations related to FTP and highlight the support available should a BPS member be subject to a complaint.  

We will close the event with a Panel Discussion, where invited speakers will be available to answer member's questions; hosted by Dr Carole Allan, an experienced Clinical Psychologist, Independent Practitioner, a former BPS President, and current Committee Member for the Special Group for Independent Practitioners (SGIP).

How to take part

Registration is £15 for BPS Members and £30 for Non-Members.

Registration closes on Thursday 30 May at 3:00pm.

Register to attend now

If you have any questions please contact [email protected].

Schedule / Programme:

  • 10:00am - Welcome
  • 10:05am - Professor Tony Lavender & Nigel Atter, Practice Board: HCPC Sub-Group
  • 10:15am - HCPC Fitness to Practice from Initial Complaint to Full Hearing (HCPC FTP Representative)
  • 11:00am - Break
  • 11:15am - Graham Mockler, Director of Regulation and Accreditation, Professional Standards Authority, Oversight of professional regulation by the PSA,
  • 11:30am - Kelly Ward (Head of Partnerships), Towergate, Professional Help and Support - Professional Indemnity Insurance: from duty to inform, to Representation. 
  • 11:45am - Dave Munday, Unite the union; Lead professional officer (mental health)
  • 12:15pmAndrea James, Keystone Law, Partner
  • 13:00pm - Lunch
  • 13:30pm - Fraser Cook, Experience of a FTP investigation - key areas to avoid and focus on.
  • 14:00pm - Nigel Atter, Professor Nic Bowes, Professor Tony Lavender & Paul Griffiths, Professional Support: Mentoring during an investigation and possible hearing.
  • 14:30pm - Dr Carole Allan, Panel Discussion: Questions and close.
  • 15:00pm - Close

Fraser Cook

Since completing his Psychology BSc in 1993, Fraser has spent 28 years working in applied psychology in the course of HM Prison, NHS and private practice employments, gaining Chartership as both a forensic and clinical psychologist.

He was until December 2023 registered with the HCPC as a Forensic and Clinical Psychologist practitioner, but remains a full member of the BPS' clinical and forensic divisions.

As an expert witness Fraser prepared numerous independent psychologist reports for the purposes of life-sentence prisoners' reviews, Magistrates, Family, Crown Court and Coroners' Court proceedings, and has spent much of his career assessing/reporting upon forensic clients who experience mental health problems.

Most recently, Fraser has shifted his focus to supporting personnel selection, and continues to provide a range of psychological consultancy services across the health, legal, public and private sectors.

Graham Mockler

Graham is Director of Regulation and Accreditation at the Professional Standards Authority.

The Professional Standards Authority oversees the work of 10 regulators of health and care professionals in the UK, and sets standards for and accredits registers of non-statutorily regulated health and care professionals.

It also provides policy advice and undertakes research to help improve regulation. 

Graham's teams within the Professional Standards Authority are responsible for assessing regulators and registers against defined standards, and reviewing regulatory fitness to practise outcomes from a public protection perspective.

Graham has a background in regulatory, quality assurance and accreditation systems, having worked for organisations in the UK and Australia in areas including medical education and training, and clinical service accreditation. 

Professor Nic Bowes

Nic is a forensic psychologist and is currently a Professor of Practitioner Forensic Psychology at Cardiff Metropolitan University.

She has over 20 years of clinical experience, working with people who have committed serious offences, working to overcome barriers to engagement and deliver interventions to help promote hopeful, positive changes to their lives, work towards recovery, desistance and reconnection with their communities.

Nic is alco an active researcher, her specialism and research interests focus on criminal violence and in the prevention of, treatment of and management of violence. 

Nic's research was accepted within the Research Excellence Framework (REF), 2014 and the most recent REF of 2021.

This means that at least 50% of her work was assessed as and judged to be either 'Internationally Excellent' or 'World Leading' and none of her work was rated as less than 'Internationally Recognised'.

Nic has experience of directing clinical trials, in challenging environments (e.g. [prison settings) and undertaking health economic outcomes of psychological interventions (e.g. Bowes et al. 2014).

Nic leads the largest HE Practitioner Forensic Psychology training programme in the UK and is currently the Chair of the British Psychological Society Division of Forensic Psychology.

Nigel Atter

Nigel has worked for the BPS for over 20 years.

He is a Policy Advisor working in the Society's Policy Team supporting, amongst other things, the Practice Board's HCPC Subgroup.

Nigel also has an important liaison function with the Health and Care Professions Council working with a wide range of HCPC colleagues.

Professor Tony Lavender

Professor Tony Lavender's training in Clinical Psychology was at the Institute of Psychiatry and Doctorate from Kings College London (1977-1979).

He has played a leading role in workforce development nationally with the Department of Health, British Psychological Society, National Institute of Mental Health and NHS Digital.

He has published extensively on services and therapies for people with psychosis and personality disorder, workforce planning, the history of clinical psychology and more recently anorexia.

He held roles as Dean of a large Faculty and then Pro-Vice Chancellor (covering research, internationalisation, sustainability and equality and diversity) at Canterbury Christ Church University.

Prior to this he directed the Clinical Psychology Programme (at Salomons) for 21 years, most of this time employed within the NHS until the Programme moved into the University.

He retired in December 2016 but continues, as an Emeritus Professor, to maintain an active involvement in reseach, mentoring, organisational consultancy, and workforce planning.

He is currently a member of the Division of Psychology (DCP) Executive and chairs the DCP Workforce and Training Group.

He is Chair of the BPS's Practice Board and chairs the Practice Board's HCPC Working Group. He is also a member of the NHSE/I/HEE National Psychological Professions Workforce Advisory Group.

Andrea James

Andrea is an expert in professional discipline and healthcare regulatory law and has over 20 years' experience representing clients in connection with fitness to practise proceedings, inquests, patient complaints and claims, Care Quality Commission (CQC) issues and appeals, NHS England processes and Judicial Review.

She is a qualified solicitor in both the England & Wales and Republic of Ireland legal jurisdictions.  The latest Legal 500 independent directory rankings describe Andrea as "a force of nature" who "works tirelessly for every client and never leaves a point unchallenged".

Andrea's clients include individual doctors, paramedics, pharmacists and dentists, primary healthcare providers, medical and dental defence organisations, commercial healthcare insurers and professional representative bodies such as The College of Paramedics and Dental Defence Society. 

She also spent three years as in-house Legal Adviser to the General Medical Council itself, giving her a unique insight into how regulators operate.  

In 2021, Andrea was awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the College of Paramedics in recognition of her "outstanding contribution to improving paramedic practice".

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