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More healthcare professionals given powers to certify fit notes

From 1 July 2022, legislation is changing which will allow more healthcare professionals to certify fit notes to patients.

Currently only doctors can legally certify fit notes.  DWP are now changing the legislation which will allow a further four professions to do this.  These professions are nurses, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, and pharmacists.

Not everybody working within these professions should issue fit notes.  Professionals should be working in a suitable environment and have the necessary skills and training to have work and health conversations with patients.  This task needs to be within their professional ‘scope of practice’, therefore new guidance and training has been developed which will help professionals to identify if this task is suitable for them.

This legislation change applies across England, Scotland, and Wales.

This change follows legislation changes in April which removed the need for fit notes to be signed in ink.  This change made it possible for doctors to certify fit notes digitally and also for patients to receive their fit note via digital channels (where GP IT systems support this).

For more information, please see the following press release .

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