Medical Council News


Clarification of Guidance

The Council recently noted correspondence from the Injuries Board to the effect that some registered medical practitioners were reluctant to provide a medico-legal report to individual patients where those patients were pursuing a claim through the provisions of legislation operated by the Injuries Board.

The Council also noted that members of the public are entitled to pursue a claim for personal injuries through the offices of the Injuries Board without the necessity of instructing a solicitor. It is necessary, however, for anybody pursuing such a claim to have obtained a medical report setting out their injuries. In such circumstances the Council will draw registered medical practitioners attention to Section E (Professional Practice) of the 7th edition of the Ethical Guide, and in particular paragraph 57, dealing with the provision of medical reports. The Council would emphasise that the Ethical Guide is a guide and is not intended to prescribe certain courses of action in every respect. If, therefore, an individual patient of a registered medical practitioner requests a report for the purposes of paragraph 57 of the Ethical Guide in order to pursue a claim for personal injury through the office of the Injuries Board, registered medical practitioners are encouraged to facilitate patients in this regard and provide reports as appropriate in these circumstances.