Letter: Healing the NHS

Sir: Your article "Undercover monitors to check on GPs" (4 January) is misleading. In November 1998, the General Medical Council decided that specialists and general practitioners must be able to demonstrate - on a regular basis - that they are keeping themselves up to date and remain fit to practise in their chosen field. A steering group has been set up to carry out further work in preparation for further discussion, on the implementation issues, in February.

The options being considered do not include "secret" performance checks. Rather, the aim is to foster a constructive and helpful culture within which the majority of doctors who are doing a good job can demonstrate this and to enable the early detection of emerging problems so that the doctors concerned have the opportunity to put things right.


Chief Executive

General Medical Council

London W1