Report calls for shake up in management of sick notes

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: (Published 20 March 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:631
  1. Caroline White,

GPs would be able to refer patients who have been signed off sick to a “fit for work” multidisciplinary team, under radical new plans designed to overhaul attitudes to occupational health and reverse Britain’s “sick note culture.”

An estimated 175 million working days were lost to illness in the United Kingdom in 2006. In England, the annual cost of sick leave and worklessness added up to more than £100bn (€130bn; $200bn)―more than the current annual NHS budget for England and Wales.

Under the new plans, drawn up by Carol Black, the UK’s national director for health and work, …

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