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Chester GP suspended for 'whiplash scam'

Published date: 08 April 2014 |
Published by: Staff reporter
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A DOCTOR who provided a ‘bogus’ medical report so a relative could make a false whiplash claim was suspended for six months after a tribunal heard his wife put him up to the scam.

Dr Anthony Kaufman has produced more than 10,000 reports for use in personal injury claims and provided his services for Chester-based Countrywide Doctors’ Services Ltd, formed by wife Pauline in 2011.

Mrs Kaufman persuaded her daughter's fiancé, Max Turbett, to make a claim following a car crash, in which he sustained minor injuries, the tribunal heard.

The former Royal Marine was never examined, but the doctor ‘fabricated’ injuries and ongoing effects of the accident before sending the form to Hampson Hughes solicitors.

The scam was exposed when Mr Turbett dropped the claim and alerted the General Medical Council following a family bust-up around April 2012, the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service heard.

Dr Kaufman had claimed that he had conducted a physical exam in Mr Turbett’s home, in Wimborne, Dorset and the information on the report was accurate.

But a fitness to practise panel, chaired by Dr William Coppola, found he had dishonestly prepared the report and his actions amounted to serious misconduct.

Dr Coppola told him: “Your conduct in relation to the fabrication of the medico-legal report was dishonest and fell seriously short of the standards expected of a registered medical practitioner.

“The panel is of the view that your conduct does amount to serious misconduct.”

He added: “The panel has seen no evidence of any remediation and notes that during your oral evidence you did not accept that the report you had written was dishonest.

“It is of the view that your dishonest behaviour brings the profession into disrepute, and would be viewed as deplorable by other medical professionals.

“Furthermore, because you have not recognised the seriousness of your dishonest behaviour in fabricating a medico-legal report, the panel is concerned there is a risk of your repeating this behaviour.”

Dr Kaufman could have been struck off, but the panel suspended him for six months after hearing from defence barrister Nicholas Peacock that he acted on the instigation of his wife.

Dr Coppola said: “Having balanced the public interest with your own interest, the panel concluded that an order of suspension for a period of six months would mark the gravity of your actions, meet the public interest, and be proportionate to the circumstances.

“The panel considers that this period will provide you with sufficient time to reflect upon and develop greater insight into your misconduct.”

Dr Kaufman is a GP at Western Avenue Medical Centre, consulting at Gordon Road, Blacon, Chester, as well as an experienced expert witness.

He will have to attend a review hearing before he is allowed back to unrestricted work.

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