Fit note hotline to help out GPs

GPs struggling to fill in fit notes can call an NHS helpline for advice from an occupational therapist.

Fit note: GPs offered support (Phorograph: Istock)
Fit note: GPs offered support (Phorograph: Istock)

GPs can phone to discuss how a patient could be helped to return to work.

NHS Direct triage staff will take calls on the 0800 022 4233 hotline. But a spokesman for the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) said GP callers would be swiftly transferred to specialist advisers.

'As soon as they identify themselves as a GP and the nature of the call, they will be put through to an occupational health professional,' he said.

The intention was for GPs to be able to call the hotline during consultations for advice, he said.

The DWP has also set up a website, backed by the RCGP, offering advice on fit notes at www.healthyworkinguk.co.uk

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