Round one to Alfred Sparman.
The well known cardiologist has won the legal right to pursue his medical practice in Barbados after his application for registration as a specialist was rejected in writing by the Barbados Medical Council on January 6.
Sparman had filed for a judicial review of the council’s decision not to grant him registration as required by the Medical Professions Act that came into force two years earlier.
When the matter came up for hearing on February 19 this year, High Court Judge Madame Justice Dr Sonia Richards ruled that Sparman could continue with his medical practice.
“It is ordered that the applicant be permitted to continue practising as a medical doctor in any area of expertise in which he practised, immediately prior to his application to the Barbados Medical Council, dated the 5th day of July, 2012, until further order,” Justice Richards ruled.
In a brief comment, to Barbados TODAY, Sparman welcomed the judgment, saying the news was “extremely good” before directing this newspaper to his attorneySir Richard Cheltenham, QC.
Explaining the developments leading up to the court order, Sir Richard told Barbados TODAY this afternoon that his client first registered in January 2001 to practise medicine in Barbados and had been carrying on a cardiology business ever since then.
“At that time, there was only a general register; there was no division into specialities. In 2012, the Medical Professions Act came into being. The act was number 1 of 2011. The Act, unlike previous situations, it made provision for both general and a specialist register. So the doctors have to apply to register as GP [general practitioner] or specialist,” Sir Richard pointed out.
He said the ruling of the court in effect means, that Sparman was entitled to continue practising as a cardiologist, which he did for about ten years in Barbados.
However, the Medical Council, which had turned down Sparman’s application to be registered as a specialist on January 6, is interpreting the High Court order differently.
Its chairman Professor Sir Errol “Mikey” Walrond informed Barbados TODAY that nothing had changed.
Sir Errol said that before the new act came into force, no doctor in Barbados was registered to practise as a specialist [since the old legislation did not make provision for such].
He noted that, as a result of the court order, the council did not have to do anything differently from what happened before the new act.
In fact, the medical regulatory body’s chairman argued that the case involving Sparman’s fight to practise as a cardiologist [specialist] has not been settled and was still being pursued in court.