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BMA declares it has no confidence in the GMC

BMA declares it has no confidence in the GMC

The BMA’s Annual Representative Meeting has passed a no confidence vote for the GMC, and will now call for its leadership’s dismissal.

The motion also said that ‘too many’ Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) fitness-to-practise (FTP) decisions are ‘disproportionate to the error of the doctors mistake’ and expressed no confidence in the current tribunal.

During the meeting taking place in Liverpool today, representatives voted in favour of a motion calling for the leadership team of the GMC to be dismissed and replaced with a team that ‘commands the confidence and support of the medical profession’.

The representatives also called for improved access to mental wellbeing support during regulatory investigations, citing the GMC’s own report on deaths during investigations which found that 29 doctors died while under GMC investigation or monitoring over a three-year period since January 2018.

Proposing the motion, Dr Samuel Parker, from the BMA’s North East regional council, said: ‘There’s a huge personal burden resulting from GMC investigations and MPTS decisions appear disproportionate.

‘The impact of doctors on GMC investigations is harrowing – a recent MPS survey of GPs under GMC investigation found 78% believed it had a detrimental impact to their mental wellbeing. Nearly half contemplated quitting medicine and over 40% felt suicidal.’

He also said that there has been ‘no improvement but a continued decline’ in the ‘unacceptable’ treatment of ‘dedicated’ medical colleagues during GMC investigations.

Dr Parker added: ‘There is no reason why the GMC cannot function communicating with doctors more compassionately.’

The motion passed in all parts.

Earlier this morning, the meeting also voted in favour of a motion which said the BMA should have no confidence in a GMC that ‘invests in corporations associated with increased morbidity and mortality’ and demanded a complete cessation of GMC ‘investments in fast-food and soft drink companies’.

In 2018, doctor leaders at BMA’s ARM supported a vote of no confidence in the GMC following the controversial court case involving Dr Hadiza Bawa-Garba.

A GMC spokesperson said: ‘We are committed to delivering effective, relevant and compassionate regulation. We have a significant programme of work underway, which we are delivering in advance of the much needed reform to the legislation that we must work to.

‘We have carried out a range of work to reduce the impact and stress on doctors who are under investigation, as we know that complaints can be distressing for them, patients and their families. 

‘We are absolutely focused on our work to target inequalities and promote equality, diversity and inclusion – both in our own processes, and across the UK health system. We recently carried out a regulatory fairness review, which assessed how effectively we look for the risk of bias in our own systems. We are already implementing many of the review’s recommendations, and we have made firm commitments to act on the others. We also continue to work hard to eradicate the disproportionate referral of black and minority ethnic doctors from employers.

‘We continue to use our data and insight about doctors’ experiences in the workplace to highlight the immediate and longer-term challenges the profession and the health system face, and are committed to playing our part in tackling them.’ 

The spokesperson also argued that the BMA’s motion lacked context.

‘Last year we published data which showed that sadly 29 doctors died while under GMC investigation or monitoring over the three-year period 1 January 2018–31 December 2020. The cause of death of 20 were from natural causes; six were of external causes, of which five were confirmed as suicide; and three were from unspecified reasons.’

The motion in full:

A 2022 GMC investigation on ‘deaths during investigations’ reports that tragically 29 doctors died while under GMC investigation or monitoring over the three-year period 1 January 2018 – 31 December 2020. Furthermore, too many Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) Fitness To Practice (FTP) decisions are disproportionate to the error of the doctors mistake.

That this meeting:- i)  believes that healthcare professionals must have improved access to mental wellbeing support during regulatory investigations;

ii)  has no confidence in the current MPTS;

iii) calls for the leadership team of the MPTS to be dismissed and replaced with a team that commands the confidence and support of the medical profession;

iv) has no confidence in the current GMC;

v) calls for the leadership team of the GMC to be dismissed and replaced with a team that commands the confidence and support of the medical profession.

Source: BMA



Please note, only GPs are permitted to add comments to articles

David Turner 4 July, 2023 1:17 pm

Excellent news this motion passed.
I don’t expect anything will happen though, too many involved in GMC want a gong or nice cushy well paid government office job a long, long way from any patients.

Decorum Est 4 July, 2023 1:55 pm

Excellent news.

Iain Chalmers 4 July, 2023 2:39 pm

Agree with other 2 posters that is excellent news & long overdue.

The reality (have personal experience) is that nothing +ve will happen. They apparently improved the process recently but I struggle to see how??

Martin D 4 July, 2023 2:41 pm

Before anyone gets excited
They did the same thing in 2000
Made bugger all difference

Alan Woodall 4 July, 2023 3:59 pm

The GMC feel impervious to any form of criticism, as others have stated this motion was approved previously and nothing happened.

It’s just a big boys club and one of the spare chairs for the posh boy elites to occupy.

win win 4 July, 2023 4:36 pm

Any petition coming through ?

C B 4 July, 2023 6:29 pm

Can we fire everyone in CQC as well as the GMC?

Shaun Meehan 4 July, 2023 9:26 pm

To those who are struggling now and worrying if they have done the right thing today please keep going- you are doing your best in a team of NHS staff who are battling against those that would see the NHS destroyed. That is the problem , its never
been you and change is coming soon. You have given your life to help others so please tell your colleagues if you are in distress, together we can make things better. The GMC are part of the problem until they acknowledge and accept that defunding of the NHS is the main factor in most complaints. I invite them to respond and work with those they regulate to admit this and improve patient care and staff well being.

Turn out The Lights 5 July, 2023 8:12 am

Yawn still doesnt convince me to renew subs and throw my hard earned blood money at them.

Dylan Summers 5 July, 2023 11:24 am

If the BMA is serious they should recommend doctors withhold GMC payments until reformed.

Dave Haddock 5 July, 2023 6:25 pm

And withold CQC payments.
And refuse to engage with Appraisal and Revalidation.

Useless invertebrates jellies.

Tom Wilson 5 July, 2023 8:05 pm

completely agree – if serious a national boycott of GMC fees may make a difference

S. Ali 5 July, 2023 8:07 pm

Although the motion could have been written SMART and more actionable, it does set the precedence for a new motion calling for token £10 ARF payments to the GMC until resolution, next year. Its a slow process but if processes are followed and given that the original GMC registers are owned by the BMA, if sanctioned by RB, it is actually possible to legally reduce fees and continue work as normal.

John Glasspool 5 July, 2023 8:16 pm

Nothing will be done: you all know this really.

S. Ali 11 July, 2023 11:14 am

The GMC persistently fail to follow process, its MPTS department is now increasingly doing the same. I wonder if the MPTS will stop substituting decisions and reasonings after a hearing (bad-GMC-practice) to be more evil, as they are publicly being highlighted as unfit for purpose

Dr No 16 July, 2023 1:10 pm

Can the BMA focus next on a vote of no confidence in the CQC? They are government stooges tasked with fault-finding at the coal-face. A total distraction from the real issue which compromises patient safety, which is government policy and funding.

Carrick Richards 17 July, 2023 1:52 pm

What about BMA’s confidence in NHSE Professional Standards and Complaint handling teams, who are even worse, more opaque and less accountable.

S. Ali 12 October, 2023 8:30 pm

for anyone whom is interested, related to this no confidence in the GMC and the GMC actively inducing suicides in doctors