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Appendix


Appendix Five: Ethical Codes


Te following pages reproduce extracts from ethical codes and professional guidelines that are particularly relevant to forensic psychiatrists.


General Medical Council Good Medical Practice (2006) Writing reports and CVs, giving evidence and signing documents:


• You must be honest and trustworthy when writing reports, and when completing or signing forms, reports and other documents


• You must always be honest about your experience, qualifications and position, particularly when applying for posts


• You must do your best to make sure that any documents you write or sign are not false or misleading. Tis means that you must take reasonable steps to verify the information in the


documents, and that you must not deliberately leave out relevant information


• If you have agreed to prepare a report, complete or sign a document or provide evidence, you must do so without unreasonable delay


• If you are asked to give evidence or act as a witness in litigation or formal inquiries, you must be honest in all your spoken and written statements. You must make clear the limits of your


knowledge or competence


• You must co-operate fully with any formal inquiry into the treatment of a patient, and with any complaints procedure that applies to your work. You must disclose to anyone entitled to


ask for it any information relevant to an investigation into your own or a colleague’s conduct, performance or health. In doing so, you must follow the guidance in Confidentiality: Protecting and providing information


• You must assist the coroner or procurator fiscal in an inquest or inquiry into a patient’s death by responding to their enquiries and by offering all relevant information. You are entitled to


remain silent only when your evidence may lead to criminal proceedings being taken against you


Royal College of Psychiatrists Good Psychiatric Practice (Third Edition, 2009)


Patients, their carers, their families and the public need good psychiatrists. Good psychiatrists make the care of their patients their first concern: they are competent; keep their knowledge up to date; are able and willing to use new research evidence to inform practice; establish and maintain good relationships with patients, carers, families and colleagues; are honest and trustworthy, and act with integrity. Good psychiatrists have good communication skills, respect for others and are sensitive to the views of their patients, carers and families.


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