Since May 2011, all doctors are legally obliged to maintain their professional competence. As part of the development of the professional competence schemes, the Medical Council has developed mechanisms that are used to assess a registered medical practitioner where concerns have been raised regarding performance. Performance assessment procedures strengthen the Medical Council’s regulatory role and involve on-site assessments of doctors’ performance
Poor professional performance (as defined in the Medical Practitioners Act 2007) means a failure by the practitioner to meet the standards of competence (whether in knowledge and skills or the application of knowledge and skills or both) that can be reasonably be expected of medical practitioners practicing medicine of the kind practiced by the practitioner.
A performance assessment involves on-site assessments of doctors’ performance. Each assessment team will be comprised of two medics and one patient representative and will conduct a workplace based assessment of the doctor’s performance using a set of assessment methods which have been benchmarked against international best practice. The team will then compile a report for consideration by the Medical Council, who will then decide on what action (if any) is necessary in each case for the doctor. In many cases, assessment will confirm good practice while in those cases where problems are identified; the procedures will also provide support to the doctor to ensure that such problems are safely resolved.