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Complaints over 'useless' NHS 24 spark investigation

GPs have condemned a law firm after it claimed that GPs 'collude' with patients to give them sicknotes with non-

specific diagnoses.

Rowe Cohen Solicitors said employers were reporting a growing trend of sicknotes with vague symptoms. They said GPs were describing stress or depression as 'viral infection' or 'stomach problems'.

Brian Rogers, operations director at Rowe Cohen, said it was 'bizarre' that a GP could 'collude with their patient to mislead an employer ­ in effect human resources staff are expected to be part-doctor'.

Dr Ruban Prasad, chair of South Lancashire LMC, refuted the allegations. 'The sick-notes are for the social services not the employers. We have to give a reason why the patient is sick and it's totally wrong to say we are misleading the employer or that we are colluding with the employee.'

The Government recently unveiled plans to monitor sickness certification and use the findings as part of revalidation.

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