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Pensions tax chaos

By Robin Stride Independent practitioners are being alerted to gear up for far bigger tax payments than expected from January 2018 following new pension rules. Changes in the pension savings annual allowance rules in the 2016-17 tax year mean many will face an additional hit of £11,000 – and some nearly double that.

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What you must know to guard patients’ data

Legal Briefing. Special report 2: Data protection Chris Alderson gives some in-depth advice on data protection in private practice. The way in which services are accessed has been transformed by advances in technology over the past decade and these developments present exciting opportunities for transforming how healthcare can be delivered.   However, when seeking to […]

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Goods can get bad and ugly

Doctors strive to give their patients the best care possible, using their skills and expertise to deliver an outcome the patient is satisfied with. However, there are occasions when the patient may believe the care provided is substandard and this could result in a clinical negligence claim.  The matter of who is at fault may […]

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A curb to pensions

For many years, there has been a maximum allowance for tax relief that you can put into a pension – more recently, this has been called the ‘annual allowance’. But despite successive governments encouraging pension saving, we are now in a position where many consultants may be exposed to tax liabilities from their pensions which […]

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A new age of consent

After reading Independent Practitioner Today’s article entitled ‘So, did you know the law has changed?’ on the Montgomery v Lanarkshire Health Board case and its impact, Mr Paul Y. F. Lee wrote in to tell us about an innovative project he is involved with. Doctors launched the Consent Plus initiative to improve the consent process […]

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Give staff a slice of the action

Incentivising staff, particularly key members of your practice, is crucial if you want to ensure they stay for a long time. Could you be providing more when it comes to rewards and benefits? Susan Hutter gives some useful pointers. Share options are available to consultants who trade as limited companies. It’s a great way to […]

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Between DVLA and the deep blue sea

In the third article about the GMC’s new confidentiality guidance, Dr Nicola Lennard looks at the fitness-to-drive guidance and how it impacts on medical professionals. In 2016, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) published Assessing Fitness to Drive: A Guide for Medical Professionals, helping medical professionals make an informed decision when talking to patients […]

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This sparky car really does have wings

Wow! There’s nothing on the road to touch this, says our motoring correspondent Dr Tony Rimmer. With our science-based medical training and generally inquiring minds, most of us tend to be interested in and attracted to new high-tech products. As a professional group, independent practitioners are early adopters of, for instance, the latest smartphones and […]

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What makes a good PPU?

  In Independent Practitioner Today’s series over the last year, Philip Housden has considered the challenges faced by NHS private patient units (PPUs). He has offered insights through the annual cycle to help PPUs make the most of the many opportunities the market presents – and deliver increasingly improved services for private patients and better […]

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Key to a good witness

What makes an excellent expert witness? Michael R. Young gives his dozen top tips. I hope my ongoing series describing the work of an expert witness has not put you off. It is always a very exacting role and it can be very varied. It can be enjoyable and it is always intellectually challenging. So […]

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Patient is cosmetic op addict

Mr Jerard Ross, a medico-legal adviser at the MDU who previously worked as a surgeon, advises a cosmetic surgeon on how to deal with a patient dissatisfied with their look.   Dilemma 1 My patient wants yet more surgery Q I am a consultant cosmetic surgeon and recently had a consultation with a patient who […]

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