To GMC 6th May 2011
I wish to report Dr. Esther Crawley for matters relating to
research-related fraud and misconduct that cast serious doubt over her
fitness to practice and which I believe are serious enough to warrant
investigation by the GMC.
I understand that you are already looking into complaints about Dr.
Crawley’s professional conduct under the above reference number.
Please find attached my complaint and please let me know if you
require any further information from me on the matter.
Reply from GMC
Thank you for your email, your comments will be considered by the case
examiners in due course. If you have any supporting evidence I would be
grateful if you could forward it to me at your earliest convenience.
Standards and Fitness to Practise Directorate
To GMC 16th May 2011
Thank you for your reply and I apologise for the delay in responding.
Please let me know if you have any further queries.
Supporting evidence –
1. SMILE misled REC child-adult ME.
2. SMILE failed to justify
3. SMILE illegal trading LP
4. SMILE promise therapeutic gain
5. SMILE child protection
6. SMILE risks PEM
7. SMILE risks patient evidence
To GMC 20th May 2011
Re: Further evidence in support of the complaint that Dr. Crawley failed to justify why the Lightning Process intervention should be used in research on children before first testing it with adults (supporting evidence document numbered 2). While the SMILE pilot study has not been funded by the MRC, I believe this extract to be of particular relevance as it refers specifically to research in children with CFS/ME.
MEDICAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
MRC CFS/ME RESEARCH ADVISORY GROUP
CFS/ME RESEARCH STRATEGY
02 May 2003
“41. In addition to these symptomatic issues, CFS/ME can affect a wide
age range, which brings additional complexities to undertaking
research. The understanding of the aetiology and outcome for children
with CFS/ME is, at present, an area that appears to be
under-researched. It is likely that interventions developed for an
adult may need significant modification before they could be evaluated
There are particular ethical dimensions to children participating in
research which must be considered in great depth by researchers, and
the rights of the child must remain paramount. Whilst acknowledging
the importance of research with children, the MRC CFS/ME Research
Advisory Group endorses the generally accepted principle that for
ethical reasons research involving children should be undertaken only
when there are good reasons why such studies could not be done in
adults (McIntosh et al., 2000).”
The case examiners may already be aware of this, otherwise I hope it is of help.
Reply from GMC 26th May 2011 –
From complainant’s reply 6th June 2011 –
The case examiners demonstrated that some of the complaints may be easily upheld, and other areas of complaint have not been addressed in full.
“The Case Examiners have reviewed all the documents provided by the complainants and Dr Crawley and cannot find any evidence from peer-reviewed randomised controlled trails that demonstrates similarities/differences of CFS/ME in adults and children or that supports the efficacy or otherwise of LP.” General Medical Council 6th June 2011
The above finding by the GMC Case Examiners confirms that Dr. Esther Crawley failed to justify why this research should be done on children before adults.
The GMC response did not address the matter of Dr. Crawley’s use of paediatric patients in collaboration with illegal traders – Phil Parker and The Phil Parker Group of Lightning Process practitioners – including directing patients and research participants to share confidential medical information on the LP application form; or the matter of coercion to participate in research as the participants are the chief investigator’s own patients recruited at her specialist clinic at the point of diagnosis and as the information they are required to read about the intervention comprises promotional sales material.