Doctor handed six-month suspension

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LOCAL GP Graeme Bianchi has been suspended for six months after failing to carry out adequate examinations of a cancer patient.

Dr Bianchi, who worked in Hawick from 1990 until he resigned in June 2010, has been found guilty of misconduct by the General Medical Council.

A fitness-to-practise hearing was held following complaints by the woman’s carer that Dr Bianchi had been lax during five consultations between April and December 2007, and he had “seemed unconcerned” about reports of rectal bleeding.

When the carer urged him to refer the woman to hospital, it was claimed he said there was no point due to the approaching Christmas holiday and delayed referral for a further five weeks.

A clinician told the hearing that given that bleeding had been going on for around two months, Dr Bianchi should have heard “alarm bells” and sought an urgent referral for his patient, who died in December 2009.

The GMC concluded Dr Bianchi’s “fitness to practise is impaired by reason of misconduct” and imposed a six-month ban.