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Recruiting for a diverse GOsC decision-making committee

22 March 2024

By Andrew Harvey (view more by this author)
Andrew Harvey is Chair of the Professional Conduct Committee and the Health Committee.

Andrew Harvey, Chair of GOsC’s Professional Conduct Committee and the Health Committee, encourages a diverse range of applicants, including from across the UK.

At this time of year, I spend an exciting period of time focusing on recruitment of new osteopath and lay members for our regulatory decision-making committees. Although this period of time also means that valued colleagues, who have supported us in our task of protecting the public, will be coming to the end of their terms of office and leaving the committees in just another year’s time.

A particular emphasis for us this year will be ensuring that our committees represent the geographic diversity of the UK. GOsC regulates across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales and it’s important that we reflect that in the make-up of our committees. Diversity takes many forms so, alongside that, I really want to see people with a mixed range of professional experience applying to join us. Indeed one of the rewards of being involved in our committees is getting to work with people from a diverse range of backgrounds.

The principles of fairness and independence are what attracted me to get involved in healthcare regulation. I get an immense sense of satisfaction from the work that we do, ensuring that decisions made about allegations of professional misconduct are fair.

Currently our osteopath members have a very wide range of professional experience. We have osteopathic colleagues who work in busy urban practices where they collaborate with other healthcare professionals, some in rural environments and others in academia to name but a few. My lay member colleagues come from equally diverse backgrounds; some have a healthcare background, others don’t, some have worked in regulation and others have never done so before their work with us.

Whatever your background, GOsC provides a really first-class induction process, with the opportunity to observe hearings before you sit on a panel for the first time. There’s a great deal of support available and our annual Committee development day gives us all an opportunity to learn from each other and from other experts.

Of course, there are a number of really important attributes to being a healthcare regulatory decision maker. It’s vital to have a sense of fairness, of independence, to be able to grasp and weigh up evidence, and to understand the importance of protecting the public. But, also, you need to be able to appreciate the vital role that osteopaths play in healthcare.

In April we will be holding a webinar aimed at people who are new to these sorts of roles whether they are osteopaths who have never had a role like this before, or a lay person (non-osteopath) who is new to the world of regulation. We ran a similar event for the first time last year, in 2023, and it attracted over 100 attendees. We have decided to run the event again as the feedback we received was positive. Attendees said the webinar was a really helpful, informal event which helped them to decide if the role was right for them. It was also a great help in preparing to apply for the role for those that decided to put in an application; and perhaps equally useful, for others attendance and asking their questions lead to them deciding that this wasn’t the right appointment for them or, at least, not at this time.

Our hope is that we can continue to help to demystify healthcare regulation and answer as many questions as we can. The aim of the event is simply to encourage as wide a range of people as possible to consider whether a role on one of our committees is right for them, regardless of experience. During the hour-long webinar, we try to bring our work to life a little, so that people can really understand what we do. There is also a big focus on answering questions that attendees may have and you’re welcome to send those in before the event or ask them on the day.

I’m very keen to find the very best candidates to join us over the coming months. So if you think this might be a role you would flourish in, and if I’ve whetted your appetite even a little, I very much hope you will consider signing up to join the webinar so you can find out more.

Read more about Andrew Harvey

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