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About the Medical Council

Through the regulation of medical doctors, the Medical Council enhances patient safety in Ireland. In operation since 1979, it is a statutory organisation, charged with supporting and ensuring good medical practice. It ensures high standards of education, training, and practice among doctors, and acts in the public interest at all times.

The Council is noteworthy among medical regulators worldwide in having a non-medical majority. The Council is comprised of 13 non-medical members and 12 medical members, and has a staff of approximately 70.

The Medical Council’s key responsibilities include:

  • Maintaining the register of medical practitioners

In December 2013, approximately 18,000 doctors were registered, allowing them to practise medicine in Ireland.

  • Defining and applying standards of medical training and education

The Medical Council is responsible for setting and monitoring standards at undergraduate, intern and postgraduate level.

  • Promoting good medical practice and overseeing doctors’ continuing professional development

The Medical Council provides guidance to doctors on matters related to professional conduct and ethics.  In May 2011, it became a legal requirement for doctors to maintain their professional competence by engaging in lifelong learning and skills development activities.

  • Investigating complaints against medical doctors

Responding to concerns and taking action to protect the public, where necessary.

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