GPs are reported to be coming around to the fit note, with nearly two-thirds (61%) now agreeing that it has either “somewhat or completely” improved the quality of discussions with patients about return to work.
The research was carried out by the Royal Society of Medicine last autumn to coincide with the six-month anniversary of the fit note, which was launched in April 2010.
Despite employer scepticism about how effectively GPs are using the new note, 48% of the GPs polled agreed that it had increased the frequency with which they recommended return to work as an aid to patient recovery. In addition, 62% felt that it had made a change to their practice, while 70% agreed that it had helped their patients make a phased return to work.
Almost all of the GPs sampled agreed that work was beneficial for people’s health, while 88% agreed that helping patients stay in or return to work was an important part of their role.
XpertHR details a roundtable event that discusses the progress of the fit note one year after it was first introduced.