Support during fitness to practise
The GDC recognises that our fitness to practise proceedings
can be stressful and seem confusing. We want to do what we can to reduce this
stress where possible. This involves
Being clear about what to expect when engaging with our fitness to practise procedures – we will be publishing new guides for dental professionals and patients this year
Ensuring we deliver the highest standard of customer care. We have developed a customer service charter that ensures our staff are clear about the standards of care our customers should expect
Signposting people who are interacting with fitness to practise procedures to support from expert organisations, if they require it. This commitment is set out in our three year road map, Patients, Professionals, Partners, Performance
The GDC has worked in partnership with Samaritans to train
GDC staff involved in the fitness to practise process to ensure they have the
skills to help recognise where an individual may need additional support.
Everyone going through fitness to practise procedures will
have a named contact. If you are interacting with the GDC’s fitness to practise
process and feel you would benefit from additional support, you can discuss
this with your named GDC contact and they can advise you where best to find
We will keep information relating to health and wellbeing
confidential in line with data protection legislation. We may share this
information with other organisations who can offer support, but we will discuss
this with you first before doing so.
Witnesses and informants should be aware that in limited
circumstances the GDC may need to disclose information to the registrant facing
fitness to practise proceedings and if you have any questions about that then
please raise them with your GDC contact. Registrants will appreciate that if
there are any concerns about their health and wellbeing that may put patients
at risk the information may be used in fitness to practise proceedings.
You can find information about organisations that can
provide you with support below.
You can talk to Samaritans at any time about anything that
is troubling you. Anything that is
disclosed to Samaritans is completely confidential.
They can help you explore your options, understand your
problems better, or just be there to listen.
Samaritans are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can
contact Samaritans by:
Telephone: 116 123 (this number is free to call)
Write to: Freepost RSRB-KKBY-CYJK, PO Box 9090, Stirling,
Visit your local Samaritans branch. Find your local branch.
For more information visit www.samaritans.org
The BDA Benevolent Fund
The BDA Benevolent Fund is an independent charity for
dentists – both past and present – to ensure that dentists do not go
unsupported in times of need or crisis.
Every year they help people who are in serious financial
need as a result of illness, accident, unemployment or other adversity. They
provide grants, interest-free loans and occasionally financial support with
career transition. Each case is dealt with on an individual basis and the
assistance they provide is tailored to each person’s needs.
For further information, or to discuss an application in
confidence, you can contact the BDA Benevolent Fund by:
Phone: 020 7486 4994
Write to: BDA Benevolent Fund, 64 Wimpole Street, London,
For more information visit www.bdabenevolentfund.org.uk
Dentists’ Health Support Programme (DHSP)
DHSP provides dentists, dental care professionals and
students with free advice and support on alcohol, drugs, eating disorders and
other health issues. They offer students and dental professionals who are in
difficulty an opportunity to remedy their problems.
If you are concerned about yourself or a colleague, you can
contact DHSP by:
Phone: 020 7224 4671
For further information visit www.dentistshealthsupporttrust.org
Practitioner Health Programme
The NHS Practitioner Health Programme is an award winning,
free and confidential NHS service for doctors and dental professionals with
issues relating to a mental or physical health concern or addiction problem, in
particular where these might affect their work.
PHP is a service for doctors and dentists who are unable to
access confidential care through mainstream NHS routes due to the nature of
their role and/or health condition.
For confidential advice contact 020 3049 4505 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
For further information visit www.php.nhs.uk
There are a number of other resources that you may find helpful:
We also have a number of informative videos relating to our hearing process that may be useful;