Northern Ireland news

Derry GP Dr Anne McCloskey given 18-month interim suspension

Derry GP Dr Anne McCloskey

DERRY GP Dr Anne McCloskey has been given an 18-month interim suspension after posting anti-vaccination comments.

Dr McCloskey will be unable to practise medicine in the UK while suspended.

The decision by the  independent Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) comes after the former Aontú councillor expressed concerns in a social media video about young people being given the Covid-19 vaccine.

In the nine-minute video, which emerged in August, Dr McCloskey made a number of claims, including that there was not enough evidence that it was safe for young people to be vaccinated.

Dr McCloskey claimed the majority of patients she treated were fully vaccinated against Covid-19 but presented as "sick, distressed worried and traumatised people".

She described the vaccine as an "experimental genetic therapy" and claimed that many people had been "bribed or bullied" into receiving both doses or else face the removal of their "basic human rights", such as travel and meeting friends.

She also said that the hospitals are "full" while the GP out-of-hours centre is "jammed with people testing positive and yet had two doses".

The Irish News was contacted at the time by some doctors expressing concerns about Dr McCloskey's remarks.

Dr McCloskey retired in 2019 but returned to the health service last April in response to the pandemic workforce appeal.

Last month the Health and Social Care Board said it was suspending her "as a precautionary measure while it undertakes a full investigation".

However, following an MPTS hearing held earlier this week, Dr McCloskey is currently "interim suspended" and the General Medical Council (GMC) is investigating.

Dr McCloskey has previously been reported to the GMC over her opposition to masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus, which she likened in a public address in Guildhall Square last year to being as effective as "using a sheep fence to keep out mosquitos".

Dr McCloskey told the Belfast Telegraph that she stood by her remarks, but did not wish to comment further.

  •  This article was amended on September 27

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