Harold Fredrick Shipman was convicted at Preston Crown Court on 31 January 2000 of the murder of 15 of his patients while he was a General Practitioner at Market Street, Hyde, near Manchester and of one count of forging a will. He was sentenced to life imprisonment.
On 1 February 2000, the Secretary of State for Health announced that an independent private inquiry would take place to establish what changes to current systems should be made in order to safeguard patients in the future. The Inquiry's First Report was published on 19 July 2002 and its Final Report on 27 January 2005.
Death Disguised published 19 July 2002
In the Inquiry's First Report, the Chairman, Dame Janet Smith DBE, considered how many patients Shipman killed, the means employed and the period over which the killings took place.
The Police Investigation of March 1998 published 14 July 2003
In the Inquiry's Second Report, the Chairman, Dame Janet Smith DBE, examined the conduct of the police investigation into Shipman that took place in March 1998 and failed to uncover his crimes.
Death Certification and the Investigation of Deaths by Coroners published 14 July 2003
In the Inquiry's Third Report, the Chairman, Dame Janet Smith DBE, considered the present system for death and cremation certification and for the investigation of deaths by coroners, together with the conduct of those who had operated those systems in the aftermath of the deaths of Shipman's victims. She has made recommendations for change based on her findings.
The Regulation of Controlled Drugs in the Community published 15 July 2004
In the Inquiry’s Fourth Report, the Chairman, Dame Janet Smith DBE, considered the systems for the management and regulation of controlled drugs, together with the conduct of those who operated those systems. She has made recommendations for change based upon her findings.
Safeguarding Patients: Lessons from the Past - Proposals for the Future published 9 December 2004
In the Inquiry’s Fifth Report, the Chairman, Dame Janet Smith DBE, considered the handling of complaints against general practitioners (GPs), the raising of concerns about GPs, General Medical Council procedures and its proposal for revalidation of doctors. She has made recommendations for change based upon her findings.