Doctor faces drugs allegation

Dr Ash Dutta
Dr Ash Dutta
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A DOCTOR is due to appear before the profession’s regulatory body after being cautioned by police over drugs record-keeping.

Dr Ashish Dutta received a caution last year for failing to keep a proper register of controlled drugs.

Now the General Medical Council (GMC) is considering issuing Dr Dutta with an official warning in light of his caution.

A hearing will take place in Manchester tomorrow, after the GMC claims Dr Dutta refused to accept a proposed warning and elected to have his case heard by an Investigation Committee.

After the hearing, the committee will decide whether to issue the doctor with a warning.

But Dr Dutta says he expects the panel will decide not to go ahead with the full hearing.

He said: “It’s not a hearing. It’s a decision on whether a hearing will go ahead or not.

“My understanding is the hearing isn’t going ahead, because there isn’t any evidence.

“It’s just a matter of putting the whole issue to bed. There is no proof of anything. There was never any evidence.”

A spokeswoman for Northumbria Police said: “In April 2010, police cautioned a 47-year-old man from Sunderland for failing to keep a register of controlled drugs.”

It is not the first time the cosmetic surgeon, who runs Sunderland’s Aesthetic Beauty Centre, has come to the attention of the medical watchdog.

Dr Dutta was temporarily barred from carrying out cosmetic surgery operations while the GMC probed a patient’s complaint he botched her eye lift.

The interim ban was lifted by a hearing panel in 2007, but it handed him a warning to remain on file for five years.

The hearing was told Dr Dutta performed an eyelift on “patient A” at Jarrow’s Palmer Hospital, in August 2005.

The following May he performed the same blepharoplasty procedure – to remove eye bags – on “patient B” at South Tyneside District Hospital, sparking another complaint.

The panel was told Dr Dutta had been on sessions since the two operations to improve his skills, including an advanced course approved by the Royal College of Surgeons.

He also attended a two-day-a-week 18-month Fellowship programme, but was unable to finish it because of his interim conditions. During the six months he did attend, he carried out “six or seven” blepharoplasty and was found to be “very satisfactory.”

The panel also took into account unchallenged evidence he had successfully carried out more than 150 eye-ops.