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02 FYi

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Welcome News


FACEBOOK CALLING all medical students – have you ‘liked’ the new MDDUS Student Facebook page? Keep up-to- date with the latest news and events by logging on to or search Facebook for ‘mddus student’.

Welcome to your FYi

THE NHS has a carbon footprint that is roughly the same as Croatia. It’s a startling figure that throws into perspective the health service’s considerable environmental impact. And while climate change might not seem like a priority in these tough financial times, it’s an issue that won’t go away. On page 10, Joanne Curran looks at the role UK doctors can play in the fight to save the planet. Doctors are renowned for making poor patients but failing to look after your health can impact patient care, as our article on page 6 explains. FY doctors have to contend

with a variety of assessments during their training and on page 4 Dr Emma Peagam focuses on Case Based Discussions, offering some helpful tips. Consent is a fundamental principle of medicine and on page 5 MDDUS medical adviser Dr Barry Parker

takes us through the three key factors that all doctors must understand in order to obtain informed consent from patients. Meanwhile on page 7 we offer advice on the tricky area of mental capacity in adult patients. The tragic story of Dr Karen

Woo, who was killed while working as an aid worker in Afghanistan in 2010, has been an inspiration for many medics across the world. On page 12, Jim Killgore highlights some of her many achievements and talks to some of the people whose lives she touched. On page 8 we examine what

it takes to start a career in dermatology, while on page 14 we analyse the case of an apparently drunk patient who was brought to A&E by police only to be allegedly “turned away” by a doctor.

• Dr Rebekah Skeldon Editor

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NEW figures have shown a rise in the number of medical graduates declaring health issues, alcohol offences or medical school disciplinary action to the General Medical Council. Applications from

trainees for provisional GMC registration have also shown a small increase in the number of “serious” issues compared to the

previous year. The proportion of graduates declaring issues overall, however, remained the same at 9.6 per cent of applications. An article in BMA News reported that 691 graduates declared fitness

to practise issues this year, ranging from minor parking offences to more serious issues such as violence, theft and criminal damage. Of these, 381 were deemed to need further investigation, and there was a small rise of 0.3 per cent — to 196 — in the number of cases declared serious and handled by the GMC’s complex casework team. Of the 7,205 applicants this year, 35 confessed to alcohol-related

offences, compared with 22 of the 7,103 applicants in 2010. The number reporting being found drunk and disorderly rose to 16 from nine the previous year, and those guilty of drink driving increased to 19 from 13. Seventy-five students said this year that they had been disciplined by their medical schools, compared with 57 the previous year. The greatest increase in this category was in warnings, which jumped to 29 from 11. Health issues were reported by 85 students this year, compared with

51 the previous year; the number of graduates with mental health issues increased to 39 from 26, and those with physical health issues rose to 40 from 22.

EDITOR: Dr Rebekah Skeldon



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FYi is published by The Medical and Dental Defence Union of Scotland, Registered in Scotland No 5093 at Mackintosh House, 120 Blythswood Street, Glasgow G2 4EA. The MDDUS is not an insurance company. All the benefits of membership of MDDUS are discretionary as set out in the Memorandum and Articles of Association.


FOR JUNIOR DOCTORS THE cost of training qualifications has been cut as part of a package of GMC fee reductions for doctors. Junior doctors will now pay less for a CCT (certificate of completion of

training) which has been cut from £500 to £390. The Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration or GP Registration (CESR or CEGPR) has also dropped from £1,600 to £1,500. All other certification-related fees have been frozen at 2010/2011 levels. From April 2012, practising doctors will pay £390 a year instead of £420 – a saving of £2.50 per month. Registered doctors who don’t have a licence to practise will pay £140 instead of £145 – a saving of 42p per month. Doctors in foundation years one and two will make a similar saving, paying £95 instead of £100.

BMA medical students committee joint deputy chair Jenny Ross said: “This small amount of change is likely to be the result of normal fluctuation from year to year, although we note the relative increase in the reporting of more serious issues.”


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