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Views on doctors’ professional conduct and ethics sought

By Catherine Reilly - 29th Jul 2021

The Medical Council has extended a public consultation as part of a review of the Guide to Professional Conduct and Ethics for Registered Medical Practitioners for a further two weeks until 18 August 2021 “due to high interest”.

The Guide provides guidance to doctors on matters related to professional conduct and ethics, including prescribing, responsibilities to patients, medical records and confidentiality, consent to medical treatment and professional practice.

The current (8th) edition of the Guide was published in 2016, amended in 2019, and is now due for review in preparation for the publication of the 9th edition. As part of this review, a public consultation is underway to obtain a broad range of feedback from individuals and organisations.

The purpose of the Guide is to outline principles of professional practice that doctors registered with the Medical Council are expected to follow.

Ms Jantze Cotter, Director of Professional Competence, Ethics and Research with the Medical Council, said: “Since we launched the public consultation, we have received some really important and valuable feedback from the public, the profession and various bodies and groups.

“Due to the high levels of interest in the consultation we are extending the deadline to the 18 August to allow those who haven’t completed their submissions to really reflect on the important topics and issues covered in the Guide.

“We are keen to build on the significant changes made to the 8th edition, ensuring that the Guide remains up to date and reflective of scenarios doctors face in modern medicine, today and in the years ahead.

“The consultation will continue to run for the next three weeks and we want to hear from the medical profession, key stakeholders and the public to ensure that the 9th edition of the Guide is as inclusive as possible, and results in guidance that supports doctors across their scope of practice,” concluded Ms Cotter.

The Guide is not a legal code; rather it sets out the principles of professional practice that all doctors registered with the Medical Council are expected to follow and adhere to, for the benefit of the patients they care for, themselves and their colleagues.

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