Health and probity

Health


The GMC says

A statement of health is a declaration that you accept your professional obligations about your personal health under Good medical practice.

Good medical practice gives the following guidance:
  • Registration with a GP – you should be registered with a general practitioner outside your family to ensure that you have access to independent and objective medical care. You should not treat yourself (paragraph 30).
  • Immunisation – you should protect your patients, your colleagues and yourself by being immunised against common serious communicable diseases where vaccines are available (paragraph 29).
  • A serious condition that could pose a risk to patients – if you know that you have, or think you might have, a serious condition that you could pass on to patients, or if your judgement or performance could be affected by a condition or its treatment, you must consult a suitably qualified colleague. You must ask for and follow their advice about investigations, treatment and changes to your practice that they consider necessary. You must not rely on your own assessment of the risk you pose to patients (paragraph 28).

As well as signing the health statement, if appropriate, the RCGP recommends that you should reflect on your responsibility to be appropriately immunised, registered with a GP outside your own family and to protect patients from any risks posed by your health. If you have a health condition that could impact on patient care, it is best practice to reflect on any reasonable adjustments that you may have made to ensure that patient safety is not compromised.

To maintain your 'fitness' to practise, you have a responsibility to look after your physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. The RCGP recognises the significant pressures on the health services GPs provide and recommends that you discuss the structure of your work and your work/leisure balance with your appraiser to ensure that your basic human needs are being met. It may be useful to consider how you would know if you were becoming unwell and what the warning signs that you might need to seek help would be.

Probity


The GMC says

You will also need to make a probity statement. Probity is at the heart of medical professionalism and means being honest and trustworthy and acting with integrity. Not providing honest and accurate information required for your appraisal will raise a question about your probity.
A statement of probity is a declaration that you accept the professional obligations placed on you in Good medical practice in relation to probity. Good medical practice gives guidance on issues of probity as follows:
  • Research (paragraphs 17 and 67)
  • Holding adequate and appropriate insurance or indemnity (paragraph 63)2
  • Being honest and trustworthy (paragraphs 65–67)
  • Providing and publishing information about your services (paragraph 70)
  • Writing reports and CVs, giving evidence and signing documents (paragraph 71)
  • Cautions, official inquiries, criminal offences, findings against your registration, and suspensions and restrictions on your practice (paragraphs 72–76)
  • Financial and commercial dealings and conflicts of interest (paragraphs 77–80)

As well as signing the probity statement, and acknowledging where there is an ongoing investigation or disciplinary matter, the RCGP recommends that you confirm that you have adequate and appropriate indemnity cover across the full scope of your work, and declare any potential conflicts of interest in your appraisal portfolio, and reflect on the potential probity challenges raised in Good medical practice with your appraiser.

Next: Keeping up-to-date >

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