MDDUS responds to GMC consent consultation


For immediate release: Tuesday, 22 January 2018

Responding to the GMC consultation on Decision making and consent, MDDUS Joint head of medical division Dr John Holden said:

“We welcome the opportunity to comment on the revised GMC consent guidance which focuses on the importance of communication as well as doctors and patients making decisions about treatment and care together.

“We agree that the guidance itself is not a set of rules but rather guidance to aid and support professional judgements.

“As we have indicated in our response, the legal annex will form an essential part of the guidance and we believe that it is necessary to have one in draft form to accompany the draft guidance. Taking things in two bites runs the risk of delays and important points being missed, hence the need to tie them together again when the annex is available. We therefore look forward to receiving the legal annex in due course as it will help our deliberations on the guidance.

“Furthermore, we recognise that the GMC intervened in the case of Montgomery, and that in many respects the findings of the Supreme Court simply brought the law in line with professional guidance, as stated in the GMC's existing 2008 consent guidance. However, the absence of a draft legal annex has prevented our ability to form a view of the weight that the GMC may ascribe to the nuances of cases that have been reported since Montgomery.

“We trust that when the GMC does produce a draft legal annex, then MDDUS and other stakeholders will be afforded the opportunity to review and revise comments on the draft consent guidance accordingly, before the overall consultation ends.”

 Read MDDUS' full consultation response here.


For further information contact Richard Hendry on 0333 0434444 or 07976 272266, or email

Note to editors

MDDUS is the leading provider of GP indemnity in the UK with over 19,000 GP members. Founded in 1902, MDDUS is a mutual defence organisation offering expert medico-legal advice and professional indemnity for doctors and other healthcare professionals across the UK.

After the introduction of state-backed indemnity scheme, GPs still need comprehensive protection that SBIS alone won’t provide. The scheme will not cover GPs for non-NHS work, representation at inquests, GMC hearings and disciplinary investigations. Such situations can seriously impact upon a GP’s career and could ultimately result in them being struck off. The scheme will also not include advice and support – something highly prized by MDDUS members. It is therefore crucial that GPs have access to support and guidance from experienced medico-legal advisers. Read more here.

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