Taking Charge of Your Health

We trust doctors with our health and our lives, so we need to be confident that they are competent and working to high standards. That’s why, back in the mid-1800s, the government passed legislation to set up a single, official register of doctors
practising in the UK. And then they established the General Medical
Council to manage it. If a doctor wants to practise medicine in
England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, they apply to us to join the register. Before a doctor can join the register we check their identity, qualifications and experience. If necessary, we also make sure they can speak English well enough to practise as a doctor. We also check with others, such as the doctor’s medical school or previous employers to find out if they have any concerns about the doctor’s ability to practise safely. There are around 280,000 doctors on
the medical register and we’re responsible for keeping it
accurate and up to date. You can see when doctors last showed us they’re up to date and giving good care and whether there are any restrictions on their practice. Search our online medical register now to
check if your doctor is on the register and licensed to
practise medicine in the UK. Visit for more information.

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