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Lack of information on “fit notes” renders them useless, says study

BMJ 2015; 351 doi: (Published 04 August 2015) Cite this as: BMJ 2015;351:h4214
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. 1London

General practitioners have not been trained properly in how to use the “fit note” system for managing sick leave and are too vague when it comes to recommending what employers should be doing, a report published on 3 August has found.1

A study by rehabilitation research experts and commissioned by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health concluded that fit notes were not being used to their full potential by doctors, patients, and employers.

GP fit notes replaced sickness certificates in 2010 and aimed to encourage doctors to help patients stay at work or return to work as soon as they can. The new system allows recommendations to be made on work modifications such as changes to working hours or …

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