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Applying for community service is fraught with making big choices. What specialty would you like to have more experience in? Do you want to work in a rural area with more autonomy – but perhaps with less support, or would you rather be in a large centre in a big city, where senior staff are on hand to assist if things get difficult? Dr Lynelle Govender highlights the different aspects of community service you need to consider when making your decision.

Working as a busy junior doctor, receiving a complaint can be a stressful experience, as it can make you feel vulnerable and knock your confidence. However, many doctors will probably experience at least one complaint during their career. Though easier said than done, the first thing to do is not panic – contact MPS and we can provide you with support and expert advice on how to respond to the complaint.

Detailed medical records can help with your response to a complaint – a quick check of the patient notes can provide background to the case, reminding you of the consultation in question and your clinical decision-making. Good medical records can also be invaluable should you find yourself the subject of a claim. Professor Selma Smith provides some practical advice on what you should include in ‘On the record’.

As ever, do let us know your feedback on this issue – we welcome all comments and suggestions. If you’d like to write for us, or have a feature idea, please get in touch.

Dr Graham Howarth – Editor-in-chief,
MPS Head of Medical Services (Africa)

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