A trust received a number of allegations that during the course of consultations a staff-grade doctor had questioned patients about intimate aspects of their sex lives.

Disciplinary proceedings were begun and the allegations were classified as personal misconduct on the basis that the questions were not a necessary part of his clinical examination, and had been asked for the purpose of his own sexual gratification.

Following several disciplinary meetings, the doctor applied to the High Court for an injunction to prevent the trust from determining his case under its procedures for personal misconduct. The court held that as the allegations arose from the doctor's exercise of his medical skills during a consultation, they were properly classified as allegations of professional misconduct. The injunction was therefore granted, and the trust's disciplinary proceedings halted.