Working with doctors Working for patients

About the GMC

Only doctors on our register can work in the UK, either as a GP or a hospital doctor, in the NHS or private sector.

Our job is to set standards, oversee the education and training of doctors and make sure that every doctor with a licence to practise medicine in the UK is competent and up to date.

At a local level, every doctor now has a responsible officer – a senior doctor who makes sure they are meeting our standards, including keeping their skills and knowledge up to date.

Trust lies at the heart of the relationship between doctors and patients and, for the vast majority of people, this works well. However, where a patient or relative does have a concern or complaint about a doctor’s practice or behaviour, these can usually be settled locally. And if a doctor is not safe – and should not be able to work in another hospital or GP practice – that is when the GMC will step in.

The GMC is independent of government, but accountable to the UK parliament. It is paid for by the doctors it registers.

How we can help you

You can learn about the standards we expect from your doctors at www.gmc-uk.org/guidance. You can find out when and where your doctor qualified and whether they have completed specialist training. You can read about cases where we have had to take action to protect patients.

What to do if you are unhappy about the care or treatment provided by your doctor

Most complaints and comments can be settled locally. If you are not sure who to go to, we can help.

  • Look on our website at www.gmc-uk.org/patientshelp or
  • call us on 0161 923 6602 or
  • Textphone users: Please use the Text Relay Service; dial the prefix 18001 + 0161 923 6602 if you have any further questions.