Ethical and Legal Principles

The graduate will be able to behave according to ethical and legal principles.


The graduate will be able to:

1. Know about and keep up the GMC’s ethical guidance and standards including Good Medical Practice, the ‘Duties of a doctor registered with the GMC’ and supplementary ethical guidance which describe what is expected of all doctors registered with the GMC.
2. Demonstrate awareness of the clinical responsibilities and role of the doctor, making the care of the patient the first concern. Recognise the principles of patient-centred care, including self-care, and deal with patients’ healthcare needs in consultation with them and, where appropriate, their relatives or carers.
3. Be polite, considerate, trustworthy and honest, act with integrity, maintain confidentiality, respect patients’ dignity and privacy, and understand the importance of appropriate consent.
4. Respect all patients, colleagues and others regardless of their age, colour, culture, disability, ethnic or national origin, gender, lifestyle, marital or parental status, race, religion or belief, sex, sexual orientation, or social or economic status. Graduates will respect patients’ right to hold religious or other beliefs, and take these into account when relevant to treatment options.
5. Recognise the rights and the equal value of all people and how opportunities for some people may be restricted by others’ perceptions.
6. Understand and accept the legal, moral and ethical responsibilities involved in protecting and promoting the health of individual patients, their dependants and the public – including vulnerable groups such as children, older people, people with learning disabilities and people with mental illness.
7. Demonstrate knowledge of laws, and systems of professional regulation through the GMC and others, relevant to medical practice, including the ability to complete relevant certificates and legal documents and liaise with the coroner or procurator fiscal where appropriate.