It’s tough being a GMC Responsible Officer. All those doctors on your books, each one a lurking Shipman. Of course, the Herr Brother Officers at the GMC and the Department of Health appreciate the terrible stresses Responsible Officers face. The Herr Brother Officers wish to help the Responsible Officers in their duties, and so have commissioned the Herr Revalidation Support Team to devise eine support system to help support ze Herr Responsible Officers in the execution of zair duties. And so it is that ze Herr Revalidation Support Team is pleased and proud to present to all Herr RO colleagues ze one – and only – Responsible Officer Dashboard!
This brilliant conception of the Herr RST borrows the traffic light labelling scheme for food and applies it to all the doctors under the Responsible Officer’s surveillance. Those doctors who behave themselves get coded green, those who are suspect (or unknown) amber, and bad doctors show up as red. Responsible Officers can see – at a glance – who has – and has not – been behaving themselves:
Woe-betide those who score red. Red means danger: “Assessment of this information demonstrates a significant concern for patient safety or the quality of care which requires immediate referral for further investigation and management (emphasis added)”:
Surely Dr No is not alone in thinking that reducing doctors career prospects to green-amber-red is a traffic light too far?