Closing submissions were heard today as a tribunal considers what compensation should be awarded to a top medic who was unfairly dismissed.
And counsel for Dr Rosalind Ranson told the remedy hearing that allegations that a government department concocted documents should be referred to the police.
In May last year, the employment tribunal found Rosalind Ranson had been unfairly dismissed from her £200,000-a-year job as medical director.
It found she had first been sidelined and then sacked after raising whistleblowing concerns about senior doctors’ Covid-19 advice not being passed on to Ministers.
The tribunal is now considering what compensation she should receive for loss of earnings, costs and exemplary damages.
It had heard that Dr Ranson had originally sought up to £6.3m in compensation but that figure had since been revised downwards by her legal team based on estimates of future earnings should she have remained in post.
No revised figure was revealed at the hearing this week.
But Dr Ranson’s counsel Oliver Segal KC said that £100,000 would be the minimum in exemplary damages that the public would recognise as appropriate to constitute punishment and deterrent ‘given we are talking about the government of the Isle of Man’.
He said: ‘The CEO of a government department subjected the medical director to a series of detriments because that medical professional had blown the whistle about public health in the context of a pandemic.’
He said that the tribunal had made findings of misconduct ‘at the highest level’ and the Department of Health and Social Care had sought to ‘cover up those actions’.
Mr Segal said the respondent had defended the case on the basis of a lie – that Dr Ranson had never expected to be medical director of the newly-formed Manx Care.
He said it had then sought to run an alternative and ‘very damaging case’ that Dr Ranson was ‘incompetent’.
He claimed that all the respondent’s witnesses were found to be ‘unreliable or worse’.
Simon Devonshire KC, counsel for the DHSC, described the claim for £100,000 in exemplary damages as ‘wholly unsupported’.
A report by former police officers has found there was no evidence that documents were concocted.
Mr Devonshire told the remedy hearing that there was no substance to the accusations, and discrepancies in dates were the result of a word document being converted to a pdf, and to correction of a typographical error.
He said: ‘There’s no conspiracy here, there’s no smoking gun.’
But the claimant’s closing submission to the tribunal, invited matters to be referred to the police.
Mr Devonshire described this as ‘regrettable’.
Mr Segal insisted that ‘at the absolute lowest’ minutes of an important meeting had been amended in order to produce a document for disclosure to the tribunal.
Mr Devonshire said there was no evidence to support Dr Ranson’s assumption that her salary would increase from £200,000 to £229,000 if she had kept her job.
He said the DHSC did not accept that the claimant’s professional reputation had been damaged to the extent that she suggested.
And he rejected as ‘unrealistic’ her claim that she would have carried on working until she was 72.
Dr Ranson had told the tribunal that it had been her intention to carry on working as that was her passion and what she thrived on.