Doctors will have duty to report bullying

Legal experts at the Medical Defence Union (MDU) are scrutinising significant changes proposed by the GMC to Good Medical Practice.

Included for the first time is a duty for doctors to act, or support others to act, if they become aware of workplace bullying, harassment or discrimination, as well as zero tolerance of sexual harassment.

The draft guidance also responds to doctors’ calls for greater clarity on their use of social media. 

Dr Caroline Fryar

Dr Caroline Fryar, director of medical services, said: ‘Regulations, sets of rules and guidance documents must be compatible with the realities of doctors’ daily working lives, and support them to get on with the job of safely caring for patients.

‘Good medical practice is at the core of everything the GMC does – setting the professional behaviours and care standards it expects of all doctors practising in the UK. 

‘It is one of the central tools used by the GMC in its fitness-to-practise processes, so every paragraph and every single word in the guidance document matters. In this consultation, the GMC is proposing significant changes while also making a number of additions.’ 

She said the MDU looked forward to thoroughly engaging with the consultation over the coming months to ensure the guidance delivered for doctors so they could deliver for patients.