The updated guidance focuses on the importance of communication, personalised conversations, and doctors and patients making decisions about treatment and care together.
We’ve restructured it and made it clearer, so it’s easier for doctors to apply in practice. And we’ve provided more advice, including steps to follow when making decisions in different circumstances.
The guidance reflects the law, policy and healthcare settings in all four countries of the UK.
Tell us what matters to you
The consultation is open until Wednesday 23 January 2019 and there are several ways you can take part.
- Full questionnaire for medical and lay professionals (approx #22 questions) – aimed at those with a detailed working knowledge of the policy, practice and law around consent. You’ll need to read the guidance to answer the questions.
- A survey for doctors and other healthcare professionals (approx #21 questions) – aimed at those with a detailed working knowledge of the issues, but who may not have time to respond to the full questionnaire.
- A survey for patients, carers and members of the public (approx #14 questions)– aimed at those who may not be familiar with our guidance, but will have views on good consent practice.
Accessing the consultation in other languages and formats
We can provide paper copies and other formats (such as large print) on request. The consultation documents are also available in Welsh.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
If you have any questions about the review or consultation please contact our Consent review team on email@example.com or 020 7189 5404.
If you’d like to submit a consultation response in hardcopy please send it to: Consent Review Team, General Medical Council, 350 Euston Road, London NW1 3JN.
What have we done so far?
We’ve gathered evidence through our own and commissioned research as well as engagement, to understand what issues to address.
We’ve worked with our Task and Finish group who provided expert input from a legal, medical, health, social care and patient perspective to review the evidence.
We’ve now redrafted our guidance to:
- focus on how doctors can support patient decision making and involve patients in decisions about their care as far as possible
- focus on the importance of doctors finding out what is meaningful for their patients and helping them explore the different options
- include practical suggestions and examples to explain how the principles apply
- make it more accessible by referring less to the law and more to the principles on which the law is based.
Why are we updating the guidance?
Good consent practice is at the heart of the doctor-patient relationship, but we know it’s sometimes challenging to get this right. Our guidance sets out good practice principles for making decisions about care, from the treatment of minor conditions to major interventions with significant risks or side effects.
Since it was last published in 2008, there have been shifts in the legal, policy and workplace environments. Doctors are telling us that increasing pressures and demands on their practice can make it difficult to seek and record a patient’s consent in line with our guidance and the law.
We want to support doctors and patients to have meaningful conversations and to make shared decisions. Therefore we have updated the guidance to ensure that it is still clear and helpful, relevant to doctors’ needs, and consistent with the law.
We want the final guidance to be shaped by doctors on the medical front line, patients, and healthcare organisations. It’s therefore vital that we hear as many views as possible.
Job: Research Assistant in Law and Healing Reflecting on English Medico-Legal History and why it Matters at University of Manchester3 September 2018
Job Reference : HUM-12583Location : Oxford Road, ManchesterClosing Date : 01/10/2018Salary : £26,495 to £30,688 per annumEmployment Type : Fixed TermFaculty / Organisational Unit : HumanitiesDivision : Centre for Social Ethics and PolicyHours Per week : Full TimeContract Duration : Starting October 2018 until 30 September 2019
A research assistant is sought at Grade 5.3 to assist in the research funded by a Leverhulme Trust Emeritus Fellowship which has been awarded to Professor Margot Brazier. No DBS will be required. The research is desk based and archival.
The research will focus on:
Completion of my monograph Law and Healing: A History of a Stormy Marriage.
Further research into legal and ethical ‘lessons’ arising from a critical analysis of the regulation of midwives in the 16th to 18th centuries and the prototype for codes of professional ethics to be found therein.
Further research into the gradual rise of judicial deference to doctors and the era of Bolamisation from 1858 to 1998•
Institute of Medical and Biomedical Education
Salary: £39,992 to £47,772 plus London Allowance of £3,027
Permanent, full time position
Closing Date: Monday 16 October 2017
Interview Date: Thursday 02 November 2017
We are seeking to appoint an enthusiastic Lecturer in Medical Ethics and Law to deliver teaching and learning and to contribute to educational provision in medical ethics and law. You will undertake innovative research in an area of medical ethics and law and contribute to exciting new curriculum development opportunities.
You should be an enthusiastic teacher and have experience of educational development, teaching and assessment in medical ethics and law, ideally at undergraduate and postgraduate level. You should have excellent written and oral communication skills and be committed to the development of your own research in medical ethics and law.
24 October 2017 – 25 October 2017
The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, 27 Sussex Pl, Regent’s Park, London NW1 4RG
The passing of the 1967 Abortion Act was a landmark moment for our reproductive rights, achieved at the vanguard of a wave of liberalising change across the western world, and directly inspiring reform in a number of other countries.
But fifty years later, how well does the Act serve women today?
In the week of the Act’s fiftieth anniversary, this two-day conference will examine its impact, its shortcomings, and the extent to which its liberal proponents’ hopes have been realised. Contributors including leading health care professionals, academics, policymakers, politicians, campaigners and service providers will address a range of important socio-legal, historical, political and clinical practice-based questions.
The conference is co-sponsored by the Universities of Bristol, Kent, and Leeds, and bpas, with generous funding from Wellcome. It will be hosted by the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
28 June – 7 July 2017
The Erasmus Observatory on Health Law / Institute of Health Policy & Management (Erasmus University Rotterdam) announces the annual Summer school on Health Law and Ethics, providing students, academics, professionals and practitioners, with an opportunity for intensive training in various aspects of health law and ethics over a two-weeks period (you can sign up for 1 week or 2 weeks), while absorbing the sights, sounds and culture unique to Rotterdam and the Netherlands. The Summer school offers a custom-developed course taught by leading academics in their field. A flyer is available here.
Salary: £28,000 to £35,000 p.a. plus benefits
Closes: 7th April 2017
Full time or part time (min 28 hours p.w.)
Fixed Term contract for 3 years
This is a great opportunity for a social scientist/philosopher/lawyer with an interest in health policy to work with a world-leading think tank that uses research, analysis and advocacy to accelerate the impact of cutting edge biomedical science in healthcare.
As part of our busy team, you will have many opportunities to challenge yourself and to learn more about both exciting advances in biomedicine and the social, ethical, political and legal contexts that impact on their use in healthcare.
To succeed in the role you will have humanities and scientific expertise with ideally a good first degree in a relevant humanities subject (e.g. law, social sciences or philosophy). A postgraduate academic or professional qualification in health/medical law and ethics or biological science, medicine, public health or public policy is desirable.
You will have strong project management skills, a talent for writing and communicating complex issues to a variety of audiences and an ambition to influence public policy through your work. You must have the personal qualities to work well with fellow professionals and experts in a multidisciplinary environment, on interesting policy projects that combine the latest science and technologies with their ethical, legal, social and economic implications. You will also be committed to helping the PHG Foundation to further develop its reputation as an independent health policy think-tank.
You can download an application pack and details of how to apply from our website.
For an informal discussion contact Alison Hall at alison.hall [at] phgfoundation.org
Interviews will be held in Cambridge on 3 May 2017.
“We should have brought a gift.”
“We’ve brought a gift. It’s called 22 thousand pounds.”
Purchased from Russia. Developed in India. Delivered to the UK.
A global transaction over nine months that offers ‘a lifetime of happiness’ to all involved.
“What do you think will happen to a baby girl in India that nobody wants?”
Vivienne Franzmann’s previous work at the Royal Court includes Pests and The Witness. Her new play Bodies will be directed by Jude Christian (Lela & Co.).
Wed 5 Jul – Sat 12 Aug
Jerwood Theatre Upstairs, Royal Court Theatre
Tickets from £12. General booking opens on Wed 22 Feb at 10am.