Sacked consultant claiming damages
Published at 00:00, Tuesday, 09 March 2004
By Pam McClounie
A FORMER cardiologist who worked at the West Cumberland Hospital in the 1990s is seeking more than £600,000 compensation after he was sacked from his new hospital.
Dr Lance Forbat, spent nearly seven years as a cardiologist in Whitehaven where he was responsible for setting up a highly-regarded cardiology service for the region.
He is now seeking compensation from the Weston Area Health Trust after he was sacked from his post as a consultant cardiac physician at Weston-super-Mare General Hospital in Somerset.
Solicitors representing Dr Forbat have filed a writ in the High Court in London. He is claiming damages of £636,434.18 for alleged breach of contract, plus interest on £5,973.86 amounting to £1.31 a day and currently standing at more than £100.
Dr Forbat began working at Weston General Hospital in January 2002. He was suspended from duty in August of that year after concerns were raised about his professional competence, including his clinical judgement, professional manner and behaviour with patients and staff.
Dr Forbat and health trust chiefs had agreed the previous month that the matter should be referred to the National Clinical Assessment Authority in order for it to review his performance. However, Dr Forbat was dismissed by letter on December 30, 2002, with full pay and benefits in lieu of notice.
It is alleged that this was done before the NCAA report was received and that the health trust gave no reason for his dismissal.
At the time he lost his job, the health trust said its board had endorsed the decision taken by its then chief executive to dismiss him. It was alleged that Dr Forbat failed to prioritise the basic duties of an NHS consultant, did not give clear guidance to junior colleagues and was generally disorganised.
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