The GMC’s new ‘back to work’ duty isn’t about GPs becoming employment advisers, but about encouraging a more holistic and patient-centred approach.
Conditions like arthritis often have a significant impact on people’s ability to remain in or return to work, which has a knock-on effect on their independence, physical and emotional wellbeing, and the demands on the NHS.
Addressing this issue early on helps keep people healthier and saves the NHS money.
It can be as simple as just asking patients whether this is an issue for them, and pointing them to where they can find out more information or receive support.
This can be organisations like Arthritis Care, or online toolkits like yourworkhealth.com, which has been developed with cross-sector expertise and is aimed not only at patients, but at employers and health professionals alike.
From Federico Moscogiuri
Head of Policy and Campaigns, Arthritis Care