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Home Industry News BMA calls for government to ‘seek support’ over new medical regulation

BMA calls for government to ‘seek support’ over new medical regulation

7th November 2007

The British Medical Association (BMA) has called on the government to seek the support of the medical profession before it implements plans to change the way doctors are regulated.

The government announced it would abandon the criminal standard of proof in doctors’ fitness to practice cases as part of the Health and Social Care Bill in this week’s Queen’s speech.

Instead, ministers outlined that doctors would be struck of off the medical register on the “balance or probabilities”.

Dr Hamish Meldrum, chairman of council at the BMA, indicated that the association was keen to ensure that patients were protected from the small minority of doctors that may pose a threat to patient welfare.

However he suggested that this would not be achieved by abandoning the criminal standard of proof.

Rather, he stated: “The best protection of the public will be achieved by a system that commands the confidence of the profession and will encourage doctors to speak about problems with their own practice, or that of colleagues.

“We urge the government to think again,” Mr Meldrum confirmed.

The Queen’s speech also saw the government propose to create Ofcare – a regulator for adult social care.

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