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OOH patients to get more protection

10th December 2010

Out of hours patients in the UK are set to get more protection from incompetent doctors.

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Rules, which allow doctors to work anywhere in Europe are set to be toughened up with better tests for language and competency.

The General Medical Council (GMC) has been working on the tightened regulations following the death of a 70-year-old man in Cambridgeshire who died after being given 10 times the safe dose of Diamorphine.

The GMC has secured the backing of regulators in 26 European Union countries for tighter controls on doctors working across borders.

The move comes after three years of campaigning Dr Stuart Gray and his brother Rory, whose father David died after being treated by Dr Daniel Ubani from Germany who had been employed by out of hours provider Take Care Now (TCN), which has been taken over by Harmoni.

Ubani is still treating patients in Germany, despite being struck off by the GMC.

GMC chief executive Niall Dickson said the Gray brothers had played an important part in the moves to introduce tighter controls.

He said: “There is recognition now by the UK Government that they need to change UK law and that they need to make significant progress in Europe. We have got 26 European regulators saying something needs to be done about language and information.”

Harmoni chief executive Andrew Gardner said: “I am very confident of all of the things we have put in place that the people in the East of England will get a good service, a high quality service, a safe service.”

 

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