MDDUS comments on unfair treatment of SAS and LE doctors


For immediate release: Thursday, 09 January 2020

  • The General Medical Council (GMC) has published the initial results of its first ever survey of specialty and associate specialist (SAS) and locally employed (LE) doctors.
  • The survey found that 30 per cent of SAS doctors and 23 per cent of their LE counterparts had been bullied, undermined or harassed at work in the last year.
  • Around one in six respondents reported suffering threatening or insulting comments or behaviour.
  • Where bullying related to protected characteristics was reported, race was the most commonly-cited factor.

Dr John Holden, head of medical division at MDDUS, said: “These latest figures make concerning reading, and are unfortunately a continuation of the trend reported last year in the GMC’s watershed report on mental health and wellbeing in the medical profession.

“Even without a benchmark against the wider NHS population, the numbers of SAS and LE doctors reporting to this survey being bullied, undermined or harassed at work is clearly unacceptable.

“The SAS and LE doctors support vital services across the NHS and are a much valued and integral professional group, with additional and important responsibilities on top of their day-to-day roles. MDDUS has recognised this and offers this group CPD-accredited training that’s tailored to their professional experience and needs.

“MDDUS will work with GMC and other agencies to explore the findings in more detail and consider remedies.”


For further information contact Alison Hardie on 07501 421398, or email

Note to editors

MDDUS (The Medical and Dental Defence Union of Scotland) is a medical and dental defence organisation providing access to professional indemnity and expert medico- and dento-legal advice for doctors, dentists and other healthcare professionals throughout the UK. For further information on MDDUS go to 

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