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11 December 2023

Whilst the Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust would not ordinarily share information about internal disciplinary processes, it is a matter of public record that the Trust has conducted a disciplinary process after an external investigation made findings that Dr Serryth Colbert had displayed intimidating and bullying behaviour towards a number of colleagues.

In June 2023, Dr Colbert sought an interim injunction relating to the manner in which the Trust had conducted the disciplinary proceedings. This application was considered by a High Court Judge at a hearing and Dr Colbert's application for an injunction was dismissed. The Judgment can be found online and this includes the factual background.

A spokesperson for the Trust said, "We have a zero-tolerance approach to intimidation and bullying. We encourage staff to speak up whenever they feel they are being, or have been, bullied. Our zero-tolerance approach is designed to stop bullying and promote a healthy working environment. It is also intended to stop the development of toxic working environments because we know such environments can adversely affect outcomes for our patients."

The spokesperson added, "We also encourage staff to speak up whenever they see anything that causes concern and we have a number of ways in which staff can do this, including our Freedom to Speak Up service. We will always investigate any such concern. We have never dismissed anybody for whistle blowing and we never will."

We cannot make any further comment on this particular case as it is due to be heard at an Employment Tribunal in 2024. The Judgment issued by the High Court following the hearing on 19 June 2023 can be found on the following link:

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