last updated:29/11/2017 @ 10:18 am

Good Occupational Medical Practice 2017

To emphasise that occupational physicians share many obligations in common with other doctors, the original words and passages of Good Medical Practice (displayed in black), and selected abstracts from supplementary guidelines of the GMC (displayed in red), are retained and presented. Where appropriate, extra commentary, written specifically by the Faculty of Occupational Medicine, then follows in a distinguishing (blue) typeface.
ForewordIntroductionDomain 1: Knowledge, skills and performanceDomain 2: Safety and qualityDomain 3: Communication, partnership and teamworkDomain 4: Maintaining trustAfterword

Establish and maintain partnerships with patients Part 1

Establish and maintain partnerships with patients

  1. You must be polite and considerate.
  2. You must treat patients as individuals and respect their dignity and privacy.12.
  3. You must treat patients fairly and with respect whatever their life choices and beliefs.
  4. You must work in partnership with patients, sharing with them the information they will need to make decisions about their care,15. including:
  1. their condition, its likely progression and the options for treatment, including associated risks and uncertainties
  2. the progress of their care, and your role and responsibilities in the team
  3. who is responsible for each aspect of patient care, and how information is shared within teams and among those who will be providing their care
  4. any other information patients need if they are asked to agree to be involved in teaching or research.9.

To establish and maintain trust as an occupational physician you must also:

  1. respect the right of workers to decline participation in a fitness assessment, teaching, or research, and inform them of the potential consequences;
  2. respect the right of a worker to enlist the help of an advocate such an employee representative;
  3. respect the right of a worker to be fully involved in decisions about their care (including decisions of job placement and medical retirement); this does not imply a worker’s right to dictate the recommendation that a doctor wishes to make on job placement or medical retirement. Workers’ views should be taken into account and you should ensure that their views are recorded and considered in the final advice. Your advice, however, must represent an impartial opinion, based on medical evidence.
  4. respect the right of workers to have access to their medical records;
  5. respect the right of workers to a second opinion where service arrangements allow this (and where arrangements do not include this provision, patients should be advised how they can obtain another opinion);
  6. provide appropriate information regarding complaints procedures.

Occupational physicians also need to build good relationships with managers. Integrity, respect, good communication, and a focus on impartial evidence-based medical advice are important elements in building a relationship of trust in which patients’ health problems and health and safety issues can be discussed constructively.