The duties of a doctor registered with the UK General Medical Council


Patients must be able to trust doctors with their lives and health. To justify that trust you must show respect for human life and you must:

      Make the care of your patient your first concern


           Provide a good standard of practice and care

      Protect and promote the health of patients and the public

  • Keep your professional knowledge and skills up to date
  • Recognise and work within the limits of your competence
  • Work with colleagues in the ways that best serve patients’ interests

      Treat patients as individuals and respect their dignity

  • Treat patients politely and considerately
  • Respect patients’ right to confidentiality

      Work in partnership with patients

  • Listen to patients and respond to their concerns and preferences
  • Give patients the information they want or need in a way they can understand
  • Respect patients’ right to reach decisions with you about their treatment and care
  • Support patients in caring for themselves to improve and maintain their health

      Be honest and open, and act with integrity

  • Act without delay if you have good reason to believe that you or a colleague may be putting patients at risk
  • Never discriminate unfairly against patients or colleagues
  • Never abuse your patients’ trust in you or the public’s trust in the profession.


You are personally accountable for your professional practice and must always be prepared to justify your decisions and actions