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  5. Updated guidance for Interim Suspension Orders and Undertakings now published

Updated guidance for Interim Suspension Orders and Undertakings now published

8 March 2024

The guidance supports our fitness to practise committees in making decisions about whether or not to suspend an osteopath’s registration during a fitness to practise investigation.

We have updated our Guidance for Fitness to Practise Committees on Imposing Interim Suspension Orders, and our Practice Note on Undertakings, following a 12-week consultation in 2023, during which we received feedback including from osteopaths, patients, key partners and members of the public.

Our Guidance on Interim Suspension Orders is now clearer on the need for committees to be proportionate when considering whether or not to use these orders. Committees are required to balance the need for public protection with the interests of the osteopath when making these decisions.

Our Practice Note on Undertakings has been updated to provide clarity on the circumstances in which undertakings might be a more proportionate alternative to an interim suspension order. Undertakings are solemn written promises by an osteopath during a fitness to practise investigation, explaining how they will restrict their practice until a final decision is made about their case.

The GOsC investigates concerns from members of the public about osteopaths, to understand whether an osteopath may be unfit to practise. In some situations, an interim suspension order may be needed to protect the public from harm during an ongoing fitness to practice investigation, until a final decision is made. In some other circumstances an undertaking by the osteopath may be sufficient.

We ensure that free and confidential support is made available to all osteopaths, patients and witnesses involved in our fitness to practise proceedings by providing access to the Independent Support Service which is open 24/7, 365 days a year.