Doctors in the UK: their new professionalism and its regulatory framework

Lancet. 2001 Nov 24;358(9295):1807-10. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(01)06800-3.


The new professionalism evolving in UK medicine is fundamentally different from the past. Founded on the General Medical Council's (GMC) Good Medical Practice, the new professionalism is an explicit statement of professional duties, responsibilities, values, and standards for doctors, developed and agreed on by the public and the profession. Compliance is being secured by embedding the culture of Good Medical Practice into medical education and by linking it directly with medical registration (licensure). From 2004 doctors will have their abilities assessed regularly by peers and by members of the public to ensure that they remain up-to-date and fit to practise medicine. Disciplinary action will follow if they are not. To ensure patient safety, the new professionalism requires professional leadership with great public input to medical regulation, a modern GMC, and a closer fit between the licensure of doctors and the quality assurance of the organisations in which they work.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • National Health Programs / trends*
  • Professional-Patient Relations*
  • Public Health*
  • Quality of Health Care / standards*
  • United Kingdom