Update Statement on behalf of the Independent Neurology Inquiry Panel

29 May 2019


Update Statement on behalf of the Independent Neurology Inquiry Panel


The Independent Neurology Inquiry Panel comprising of Chairman, Mr. Brett Lockhart QC and Professor Hugo Mascie-Taylor, today Wednesday 29th May 2019 met with the representatives of the political parties to give them an update on the work of the Inquiry.

This is the fourth such meeting and is part of the ongoing consultation process which the Panel committed to in June 2018.


Speaking after the meeting, Mr. Lockhart QC and Professor Mascie-Taylor said:


“In the absence of a local Minister and a functioning Assembly we believe this ongoing consultation with local politicians is essential. We acknowledge in particular their insights into the issues, which concern their constituents.


“The engagement process involving the public, patients, medical and non-medical personnel has been substantial and the Panel has met on no fewer than 70 occasions. Written documentation submitted to the Inquiry to date amounts to just under forty thousand pages and new documentation continues to emerge from information gathering and witness statements.


“There is much important work yet to be done and the Panel has been and will continue to be proactive in sharing information and signposting to the relevant bodies and organisations issues raised directly with them, which do not fall within the remit of the Inquiry, but which do require immediate attention.


“The Panel will continue to take direct evidence from the public, health organisations, medical and non-medical personnel and collate all relevant information and documentation”. A further update will be given later in the year.


Statement ends


No interviews will be given as the work of the Inquiry is ongoing.


Notes to editors:


Summary in statistics:


  1. Inquiry Panel has met on 70 occasions.
  2. Following the public information campaign a total of 193 questionnaires were completed and returned to the Inquiry.
  3. Witnesses to the Inquiry to date number 122. These include 75 medical personnel, 17 non-medical administrators, 30 members of the public including two off site visits.
  4. Pages of evidence submitted to the Inquiry to date amounts to 39,845 pages.
  5. Proactive signposting and sharing of information with the relevant bodies on issues which require immediate action but are outside of the remit of the Inquiry total 167 to date. These include 84 referrals to the GMC, 81 referrals to the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust and 2 referrals to the RQIA.
  6. Witnesses yet be interviewed include 28 medical staff, 21 non-medical administrators, 8 organisations and several members of the public.
  7. The evidence submitted to date means that a number of repeat interviews will be required.
  8. The Inquiry has received the full cooperation from all working within the Health Service, in line with the expectation of the Permanent Secretary at the Department of Health when the Inquiry was set up.

Technical queries on the work of the Inquiry may be addressed directly to the Secretary to the Inquiry, Geraldine Quinn by email to media@neurologyinquiry.org.uk