A top oncologist was yesterday branded 'reckless', 'dishonest' and 'arrogant' in a blistering ruling after a probe into his treatment of terminally ill cancer patients.
Professor Justin Stebbing, who has treated stars including actress Lynda Bellingham and Sir Michael Parkinson, was nicknamed 'God' by grateful patients and dubbed 'Dr Hope' for treating those considered beyond help.
But a marathon disciplinary hearing set up after a whistleblower raised concerns about his lucrative private practice has concluded his behaviour breached 'the very core of the Hippocratic Oath'.
In a ruling that could lead to the 50-year-old doctor being struck off, tribunal chairman Hassan Khan accused him of responding to legitimate concerns about patients' treatment in a 'dismissive, confrontational and aggressive manner'.
Professor Justin Stebbing, who has treated stars including actress Lynda Bellingham and Sir Michael Parkinson, was nicknamed 'God' by grateful patients and dubbed 'Dr Hope' for treating those considered beyond help
Instead of taking colleagues' warnings seriously, Stebbing was 'blind to the patient safety concerns being raised' and dismissed those who questioned him 'out of hand' due to 'his displeasure at being challenged', Mr Khan concluded.
He noted a 'troubling' theme that the Oxford-trained doctor was prepared to sanction 'futile' treatment in a way that was 'fundamentally inconsistent with the best interests of patients and their safety'.
In a scathing 95,000-word judgment, the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service panel also hit out at two of the country's most eminent oncologists who gave expert evidence in support of Stebbing.
It said one, Professor Karol Sikora, had given evidence that was 'fundamentally incompatible with his duties as an independent and impartial expert'.
The investigation into Stebbing has been controversial, with patients and families lining up to defend him and accuse the General Medical Council – which brought the case – of a