Five healthcare priorities for a new government

A new government must act on five priorities to ensure health professionals’ wellbeing at work, according to a leading medical defence specialist.

MDDUS has today published its five key asks of the incoming government, which are based on direct feedback from the 65,000 doctors and dentists it represents.

The pressure on health professionals has never been greater. Burnout is now commonplace, and an increasing number of doctors and dentists are signalling their intent to quit the National Health Service.

MDDUS wants to see the new Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to commit to immediate and impactful change in five areas:

  1. Address the burnout and wellbeing crisis among doctors and dentists
  2. Act to halt the exodus of doctors and dentists from the NHS
  3. Accelerate reform of all professional regulators, especially the General Dental Council (GDC)
  4. Recognise and support International Medical Graduates (IMGs) and stamp out racism in the workplace
  5. Reinforce the zero-tolerance policy towards those who threaten, assault and abuse healthcare professionals

Chris Kenny, chief executive of MDDUS, said: “The issues are well documented and the time for decisive action is now.

“General election campaign rhetoric must swiftly turn into concrete responses to the challenges facing our members.”

Mr Kenny said the new government must not wait until its party political conference in September to announce policy changes.

He said: “The risk of inaction is already plain to see – waiting lists are up, overwhelmed services are missing targets and burnout is rampant.

“In the soundbite culture of election campaigning we’ve heard laudable messages about ‘bringing back the family doctor’ and ending the ‘8am scramble’ to see a GP. 

“However, what’s really needed to underpin these and all the other great aspirations is a credible, long-term plan to protect and retain the current healthcare workforce.

“That should be the top tier domestic priority for an incoming government.

“We know from what our members tell us that the conditions in the NHS impacts their safe practice. The concerns doctors and dentists have about the health services should concern us all.

“Policies to address the key asks in our manifesto document will be good not only for doctors and dentists, but good for their patients too.”

Read the MDDUS ‘five asks’ in full.


The Medical and Dental Defence Union of Scotland (MDDUS) is a mutual organisation that protects the professional interests of more than 65,000 doctors and dentists across the United Kingdom, offering access to indemnity, support and legal advice.

For further information please contact Lisa Walker, communications manager, on or 07976 886552.

This page was correct at the time of publication. Any guidance is intended as general guidance for members only. If you are a member and need specific advice relating to your own circumstances, please contact one of our advisers.

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