Peter Rubin: Getting the regulation balance right

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: (Published 11 June 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b2360
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

    Clare Dyer talks to Peter Rubin, the new head of the General Medical Council about tackling patients’ concerns with doctors without losing sight of the profession’s interests

    “I’m not fussed about being loved or liked; I am fussed about being respected,” says Peter Rubin, the new chairman of the General Medical Council. He shrugs off brickbats from doctors who fear and dislike the UK medical regulator and accuse it of jettisoning the profession’s interests and caving in to government demands for reform.

    The body is regularly pilloried by both its main interest groups: the profession sees it as trigger happy, too ready to take up frivolous or vexatious complaints against doctors, and patients’ groups, such as Action for Victims of Medical Accidents, claim the doctors’ regulator is slow to act in the face of patients’ concerns.

    Paediatricians charge the GMC with scaring off doctors from child protection work by heavy handed action against two leading figures in the field, Roy Meadow and David Southall. In a letter to the Lancet last month, Professionals Against Child Abuse accused the GMC of conducting “flawed” disciplinary hearings and being “improperly” influenced by media campaigns driven by parents. Add in the resistance …

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