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BMJ 1997; 315 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7118.3a (Published 15 November 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:S3a-7118

The GMC requires doctors to act quickly to prevent risk to patients if they suspect that a colleague is not fit to practise. Often the first step will be an informal discussion with a colleague, but as the latest guidance from the BMA's consultants and specialists committee suggests, this alone is insufficient. Doctors who rely on informal actionÑsuch as referral to a counselling service or the “three wise men”Ñmust satisfy themselves subsequently that the problem has been resolved. If it has not, the medical director should be contacted in writing.

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