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Health chief agrees GPs should create 'well note' culture

<p>The Department of Health is backing the idea for GPs to become more involved in getting people back into employment. </p><p>Health secretary Alan Johnson wants to look into how GPs can change our sick note culture into a well note culture, concentrating on what individuals can do, rather than what they cannot. </p><p>Dame Carol Black, who is currently looking into how GPs and business can work more effectively together, has already made these recommendations in public, and is expected to do so formally in her review. </p><p>Johnson also wants employers to better promote the health and wellbeing of staff, and says Government should work with employers to improve how to identify health risks such as stress. </p><p>But the British Medical Association (BMA) is wary of the plans. </p><p> Confirming that a patient is unwell is very different from making a judgment on whether someone is well enough to do their job, says Dr Peter Holden, a lead negotiator for the BMA GPs Committee. Employers should be encouraged to provide staff with access to proper occupational health services that will help them get back to work. </p>

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