Research by the General Chiropractic Council found that patients have low recognition and understanding of the term ‘Duty of Candour’.

Following the publication of new GCC Guidance on the Duty of Candour in September 2023, the GCC, working with the GOsC, recently undertook research to explore candour as understood by patients.

This research with a patient panel aims to better understand a patient’s expectations in these circumstances and how patients can be supported to be partners in their care before, during and after, if things go wrong.

UK Fitness to Practise News

Key findings of the research include:

  • Patients have low recognition and understanding of the term ‘Duty of Candour’.  The term ‘Duty of Candour’ means very little to patients but, when explained, patients considered Duty of Candour to be an implicit part of being a professional practitioner and therefore doesn’t require explanation. Patients prefer words such as honesty, openness and transparency.
  • Patients understand the challenges facing chiropractors in relation to compliance with the Duty of Candour.  Patients recognise that mistakes may happen and appreciate the challenges facing practitioners. There is an understanding that patients must also take some responsibility for their care. If something does go wrong with a patient’s care, then ongoing dialogue between patient and practitioner is critical and can help to build trust.
  • Patients recognise that apologies are difficult and ‘getting it right’ requires careful reflection as well as using the right language and tone. Patients believe a good apology should involve dialogue with the patient and provide a clear description of what went wrong, together with an action plan. The language used should be jargon-free and centred around the patient.

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