Medical Disabilities that could affect Patient Care

Medical Council: Health Committee

The Health Committee’s primary role is to monitor and support medical practitioners to maintain their registration during illness and/or disability whether it be physical or mental disability (including addiction to alcohol or drugs) which may impair the practioner’s ability to practise medicine or a particular aspect thereof.

Such medical practitioners may come to the attention of the Medical Council in a variety of ways, including: self-referral; referral by a third party or referral from the Council.

This Committee was formed under Section 20(4) of the Medical Practitioners Act 2007 to support and monitor those medical practitioners.

The underlying principle behind the establishment of this Sub-Committee is to support doctors in the maintenance of their registration during illness and recovery, where there is no patient risk that could be subject to complaint.

As such, the Sub-Committee also continues to offer its support and advice to medical practitioners referred through third parties or self-referrals. Referrals are treated as confidential within the Sub-Committee, and may be useful as a support not only to the doctor with an illness, but also to their treating doctor.

The Sub-Committee has a wide range of expertise amongst its membership but especially in relation to mental health issues and addictions. There is also a range of external expertise available to the Sub-Committee for a variety of other illnesses, if required.

  • Self-Referral
  • Referral by a third party e.g. Colleague
  • Consent pursuant to Section 67(1)(c) of the Act (undertaking to FTP Committee)
  • Referral by Medical Council
  • Annual declaration (if practitioner discloses health issue, practitioner offered support of Health Committee)

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