Medical Protection welcomes the announcement from the General Medical Council (GMC) to roll out personalised contact when starting investigations.
The change comes as results of a Medical Protection survey show almost three in four doctors investigated by the GMC find their mental health affected specifically by the initial, unexpected notification of investigation from the GMC.
The commitment to personalised contact is particularly welcomed as it follows a recommendation from Medical Protection to provide additional support to doctors when they are initially contacted by the regulator.
Kashif Mahmood, Lead Legal Adviser for Medical Protection said: “This commitment from the GMC is welcome and could not come at a more pertinent time. A recent Medical Protection survey of doctors who have been subject to a GMC investigation found that almost three in four – 71 percent – say their mental health was impacted by ‘the initial, unexpected notification of the investigation’.
“This was reported more than any other single factor as having an impact on mental health, so it is welcome news that a more personalised approach will be taken when initially contacting doctors about an investigation.
“Doctors understandably can feel very vulnerable when contacted out of the blue by their regulator. It is important to note that when a healthcare professional is initially contacted by the GMC, this will often be an interim measure in response to a concern, not a proven fact.
“For these reasons Medical Protection recently called on the GMC to provide additional support to healthcare professionals upon initial contact.
“Medical Protection offers members access to a free, confidential counselling service, however having this support supplemented by an improved method of contact from the GMC is a welcome step in the right direction.
“Medical Protection knows first-hand, how traumatic the experience of receiving a letter of concern from the GMC can be for our members. As such, the sooner they reach out to us, the sooner we can help them with the support and expertise they need from our team of doctors and lawyers.”
For media queries contact Mike Bridge: [email protected]; 07773 573303
Notes to editors
The Medical Protection survey of 197 members who have been investigated by the GMC in the last 5 years, was undertaken during November/December 2022. Further survey results will be published in due course.
Medical Protection offers a free, confidential counselling service to any members experiencing work-related stress. Members can call trusted partners ICAS on 0808 189 4385 or +44 3300 241 021 from overseas and quote their Medical Protection membership number to book a free session. More information can be found here: www.medicalprotection.org/uk/medicolegal-advice/counselling-service
About Medical Protection Society
The Medical Protection Society Limited (“MPS”) is the world’s leading protection organisation for doctors, dentists and healthcare professionals. We protect and support the professional interests of more than 300,000 members around the world. Membership provides access to expert advice and support and can also provide, depending on the type of membership required, the right to request indemnity for any complaints or claims arising from professional practice.
Our in-house experts assist with the wide range of legal and ethical problems that arise from professional practice. This can include clinical negligence claims, complaints, medical and dental council inquiries, legal and ethical dilemmas, disciplinary procedures, inquests and fatal accident inquiries.
Our philosophy is to support safe practice in medicine and dentistry by helping to avert problems in the first place. We do this by promoting risk management through our workshops, E-learning, clinical risk assessments, publications, conferences, lectures and presentations.
MPS is not an insurance company. All the benefits of membership of MPS are discretionary as set out in the Memorandum and Articles of Association.