General Medical Council Regulating doctors, ensuring good medical practice



Consultation on Personal beliefs and medical practice

Closed Closed
Start: Apr 18, 2012 End: Jun 15, 2012 Results Published: Dec 31, 2012 
Subject: Standards and Ethics, Consultation Reference Number: 268

Consultation summary:

The General Medical Council (GMC) is consulting on guidance which sets out what is expected of doctors registered with us. The guidance we’re consulting on explains in more detail, principles in Good Medical Practice. We consulted on a revised draft of Good Medical Practice between October 2011 and February 2012 and are now seeking views on the more detailed guidance.

The consultation is open to anyone who wishes to comment on the issues in the revised guidance – this is your chance to have your say. It runs from Wednesday 18 April 2012 to Wednesday 13 June 2012. We will use the responses to produce final versions of the guidance which we will publish together with a new edition of Good Medical Practice and other learning materials by the end of 2012.

When the consultation closes, we will review all the feedback we’ve received and use this to finalise the draft guidance. We will publish a report summarising the feedback and how we’ve used it to redraft the guidance, at the same time.


We advise doctors on the standards expected of them by the profession, their patients and the general public.

Good Medical Practice (2006) is our core guidance for doctors. All doctors are required to be familiar with and follow the guidance and patients can use the guidance to find out what they can expect from their doctors.

As well as Good Medical Practice we have several pieces of explanatory guidance which expand on the principles in Good Medical Practice. Some of this guidance is published as booklets (on consent, confidentiality and so on) while others are shorter statements that are downloadable from the GMC website. You can read all our current guidance on-line at


The purpose of this consultation is to test the redrafted explanatory guidance which will accompany the revised edition of Good Medical Practice which we’ll publish by the end of 2012.

The explanatory guidance does not establish new principles – we tested these when we consulted on the core text of Good Medical Practice from Oct 2011 – Feb 2012. Instead, we are running a shorter (eight week) consultation to seek views on the way in which we’ve explained the existing principles in Good Medical Practice. In particular, have we got them right, is there anything missing and are they clear? We believe it’s important that everyone with an interest in the guidance (this includes doctors, employers, educators, patients, and representative bodies), has an opportunity to tell us what they think of the draft explanatory guidance before it is published.

Further Details:

Consultation Type: General
Consultation Method: Consultation Document

Contact Information:

Standards and Ethics Team
Phone: 020 7189 5404

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