Paediatric neurologist’s suspension may affect 50 birth damage cases in which he was an expert witness

BMJ 2015; 350 doi: (Published 09 April 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;350:h1855
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1The BMJ

Dozens of High Court cases involving birth damage have been thrown into disarray by the suspension of a leading consultant paediatric neurologist who was exposed by a Sunday newspaper as apparently taking cocaine and the “clubbers’ drug” gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB).

Colin Ferrie, 51, was one of the most sought after expert witnesses in such cases, having acted for claimants and for the NHS Litigation Authority, which represents NHS trusts. “He was very much liked and everybody wanted him on their side,” said one lawyer, who estimated that “at least 50” cases would be affected.

In early January the Mail on Sunday ran video footage allegedly showing Ferrie taking the drugs. The newspaper quoted a switchboard operator at Leeds General Infirmary, where he worked, as confirming just over an hour later that …

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