Fitness to practise explained

Doctors are one of many professions that are regulated in the UK and around the world. Regulation helps the public have trust and confidence in professionals.

This is because one function of almost all regulators is to protect the public in some way. Regulators set the professional standards expected of a profession. They can also take action when individuals seriously depart from the standards, to minimise the risk to the public.

At some point in a doctor’s career, a concern may be raised about their performance, behaviour, or the impact that a health condition is having on their ability to practise safely. The concern may be raised with them, their employer, or to us, as their regulator.

This guide explains our role to assess concerns, the principles we follow, and how we support doctors throughout the process.