the biggest change to medical regulation in 150 years
(PRWEB) October 15, 2008
It has been reported this month that the Government will announce a £1 million fund to support the new proposals for performance checks on the 150,000 doctors on the medical register.
It is proposed that doctors are to face annual competence tests, and that those who do not perform adequately will have their license to practice medicine withdrawn. Furthermore, doctors will be required to renew their practising licenses every five years. The President of the General Medical Council, Sir Graeme Catto, has described the proposals as "the biggest change to medical regulation in 150 years". The new scheme is designed to remove doctors from practice that repeatedly fail to meet standards of competence, and in turn raise standards of medical practice in the UK.
Sir Liam Donaldson, the government's Chief Medical officer, who has set out the new plans will appoint a team of doctors to decide how best to implement the new proposals, and the scheme will be piloted early in 2009. Under the new system senior doctors will assess other doctors in their area of practice, to ensure that they meet standards. Patents will also be involved in the process and will be asked how their doctor communicates with them.
MyClaim can only welcome this increased regulation of doctors and the government's financial commitment to the scheme; when it is estimated that close to a million people in the UK suffer unnecessarily as a result of the negligence of health care professionals, every year. These cases arise from a variety of circumstances and examples include among others misdiagnoses, the administering of incorrect doses of drugs, surgical errors, lack of consent, breakdown in communication, birthing problems and falls. MyClaim hopes that the annual competence tests will lead to a drop in medical negligence claims within the personal injury sector.
Whist MyClaim acknowledges that a balance must be struck between the strict regulation of doctors and allowing them the freedom to take necessary risks, so as to avoid defensive medicine; incompetence is clearly unacceptable, and it considers that these changes can only benefit medicine within the UK.
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