Written evidence from the Medical Protection
Society (REV 11)
1. The government must ensure that the public
has a proper understanding and realistic expectations of the purpose
2. The process of revalidation must be accessible
to all doctors who wish to revalidate, regardless of their portfolio
3. The costs of remediation should be borne centrally
to reflect the benefit that it will bring to the wider public.
1. The Medical Protection Society (MPS) is the
leading provider of comprehensive professional indemnity and expert
advice to more than 270,000 doctors, dentists and other health
professionals around the world. We have over 100 years' experience
of the medicolegal environment and operate in 40 countries around
the world. In the United Kingdom we have around 170,000 doctors,
dentists and other healthcare professionals in membership comprising
around 50% of all doctors and 70% of all dentists.
2. As a mutual, not-for-profit organisation we
offer members help, on a discretionary basis, with legal and ethical
problems that arise from their professional practice. This includes
clinical negligence claims, disciplinary and professional regulatory
investigations, inquests, complaints and general ethical and professional
3. MPS welcomes the commitment from the GMC to
simplify and streamline the proposals for revalidation.
However although we support the principles behind revalidation,
we have concerns that as currently drafted, our members may face
issues in relation to public expectations, fairness and remediation.
These are outlined below.
4. MPS would like the government to ensure that
the public has realistic expectations about the purpose of revalidation.
Although it may help to identify poorly performing doctors at
an earlier stage, it cannot eliminate poor practice or stop wilful
criminal behaviour in doctors such as Harold Shipman.
5. It must be remembered that although revalidation
will be an important and valuable tool, it will be just one of
several measures that should be in place to demonstrate to patients
and the public that doctors are keeping their knowledge and skills
up to date and are fit to practise
6. MPS believes the process of revalidation must
be accessible to all doctors who wish to revalidate, whilst at
the same time being robust and not putting excessive burdens on
doctors or employers.
7. It will be absolutely essential to pilot revalidation
in a wide range of specialties, both clinical and non-clinical,
to ensure that the process is fit for purpose, achievable and
sufficiently flexible to accommodate the wide range of practice
undertaken by licensed doctors in the twenty-first century. There
currently appears to be a wide range of differing levels of detail
in the specialty specific frameworks produced by the Royal Colleges.
8. Revalidation will identify doctors in need
of some level of remediation and it is very important that the
resource implications are properly recognised. MPS welcomes the
recognition that the costs of good clinical governance, including
remediation, should be seen in the light of their associated benefits
to patients and the public, doctors and employers. In order to
reflect this, we strongly believe that the costs of remediation
should be borne centrally.
9. We believe that all doctors should be provided
with the framework to support remediation. In particular, thought
must be given to how doctors working as locums can access remediation
in the same way as doctors in regular employment.
2 GMC Revalidation: A Statement of Intent (October