Fit note changes 'positive step' in reducing GP bureaucracy

Dr Gary Howsam, Vice Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said the following

"The College has supported the idea of allowing other healthcare professionals working in general practice, where appropriate, to issue fit notes, and it is good to see that this will soon become a reality.

“This move should help free up GPs' time to deliver patient care to those who need their medical expertise at a time when the profession is working under intense workload and workforce pressures. It also recognises the role of some members of the wider practice team in giving patients advice about health and work, and it's encouraging to hear that guidance and training will be put in place to help nurses, occupational therapists, physiotherapists and pharmacists ascertain whether this task is in their scope of practice, and support them to do this safely and effectively. 

"This is a positive step in helping to reduce the bureaucratic burden GPs face on a daily basis, but it won’t solve the workload and workforce pressures facing general practice alone. Ultimately, the Government must take further action to address escalating workload in general practice and chronic workforce shortages.”

Further information

RCGP Press office: 0203 188 7659

Notes to editor

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 52,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.