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GMC responds to NICE guidance
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9th September 2015
AUK Staff
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 Our prescribing guidance makes it absolutely clear that doctors should only prescribe if they are satisfied that this would serve the patient’s needs
 Niall Dickson
Responding to new guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) aimed at tackling inappropriate antibiotic prescribing, Niall Dickson, Chief Executive of the General Medical Council, said:

“Our prescribing guidance makes it absolutely clear that doctors should only prescribe if they are satisfied that this would serve the patient’s needs. Where they consider that the treatment would not benefit the patient, they do not have to provide it. Our guidance also makes clear that doctors should take account of clinical guidelines published by established organisations with appropriate expertise, including those by NICE. We will draw this new guidance to the attention of doctors.

“As the Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies has pointed out, overprescribing of antibiotics risks the health of us all, and it is obviously important that every practising doctor in the UK reflects on this latest guidance. However, we see this as being more about changing the norms of practice generally than pursuing individual doctors.

 ...overprescribing of antibiotics risks the health of us all, and it is obviously important that every practising doctor in the UK reflects on this latest guidance
 Niall Dickson
“We would certainly hope that the annual appraisal, which forms part of the revalidation cycle, provides a valuable opportunity for a doctor to reflect on all aspects of their practice including their prescribing and we would expect that doctors would undertake any further training that might be identified as part of that process.

“Doctors can, and do, face sanctions for mis-prescribing, although the law dictates that each case has to be considered on its merits to determine whether the doctor’s actions pose a risk to patients or confidence in doctors.”


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