The Employment Appeal Tribunal has upheld the decision of the Employment Tribunal to find that a GP registered with CBCH, a company providing out-of-hours services to the NHS, was a worker under section 230(3)(b) of the Employment Rights Act 1996.
The Employment Tribunal had found that the doctor was a worker despite the fact that from October 2015 she was paid through a limited company. The judge noted the main features of the GP’s role, including that she had worked regular shifts for around 12 years, but that there was no mutuality of obligation; she did not need permission to perform work outside CBCH’s activities; she provided her own medical equipment and indemnity insurance; and she was required to work personally for the provider and could not send a substitute of her choice. The NHS contract for out-of-hours service providers required providers to ensure that the doctors discharging the services were competent and properly qualified. CBCH therefore had to audit the services provided by the GPs on its books.
The EAT upheld the judge’s finding, distinguishing another EAT decision, Suhail v Herts Urgent Care UKEAT0416/11. The critical difference was that Dr Suhail had been found to be positively marketing his services to whichever provider of medical services might wish to provide him with work. By contrast, Dr Narayan worked regular shifts for one provider over many years.