Briony Molyneux, instructed by the Royal College of Nursing, appeared for Mrs Fariba Mirtorabi in her appeal – Mirtorabi v Nursing and Midwifery Council  EWHC 476 (Admin).
The appeal sought to challenge the decision of the Nursing and Midwifery Council’s Conduct and Competence Committee to impose a strike off Order following a contested hearing.
It was submitted in the appeal that the Panel, when they had been informed at the impairment stage that Mrs Mirtorabi had already appeared before two previous Panels for other matters and found to be impaired at both, had placed undue weight on this information, thereby unfairly affecting their ultimate decision in finding that no other sanction short of striking off could be proportionate in the circumstances.
Lang J in considering and rejecting the appeal found as follows at para 34 onwards –
’34. The CCC then gave careful consideration to the circumstances in which a Striking-off Order is the appropriate sanction, according to the guidance in the ISG. It concluded that the Appellant’s serious departures from professional standards and persistent lack of insight into the seriousness of her actions and consequences meant that a Striking-off Order was needed to protect the public interest. The CCC concluded that there was no real likelihood of her practising as a safe nurse in the foreseeable future.
35. The CCC correctly applied the principle of proportionality, referring to it at the beginning of its considerations on sanction and then concluding:
“In coming to this conclusion, the panel applied the principle of proportionality. It balanced your interests in being able to continue in your chosen career and the possible effect on you of a Striking-Off Order with the need to protect the public and maintain public confidence in the profession. Notwithstanding how this decision may affect you, the panel found your interests were outweighed by the public interest.”
36. I consider that the CCC was entitled to conclude, in the exercise of its judgment, that it was proportionate to strike the Appellant from the register, for the reasons which it gave.’