A recent study conducted at Imperial College London has revealed that doctors who go through a complaints process or an investigation by the General Medical Council (GMC) suffer from anxiety, depression, and even suicidal thoughts. Doctors who face complaints or even doctors who see colleagues in this situation undoubtedly change the way they treat their patients, and not for the better.

“Of course it’s essential that when things go wrong, the reasons are properly investigated,” Professor Tom Bourne, lead researcher from the Department of Surgery and Cancer at Imperial College London, said in a statement. “But this study suggests that the regulatory system we have in the UK has unintended consequences that are not just seriously damaging for doctors, but are also likely to lead to bad outcomes for patients. We think this needs to be looked at carefully by policy makers.”

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