GMC registers hundreds of overseas doctors for London 2012

Published on Thursday, 19 July 2012 12:37
Posted by Scott Buckler

Hundreds of overseas doctors have been registered by the General Medical Council (GMC) to enable them to treat athletes during the Olympic and Paralympic Games, it was announced today

The GMC has granted temporary registration to almost 900 doctors from around the world – from Argentina to Zambia – so they can support their teams during the Games.

The French Olympic team has registered 58 doctors, the highest number for any country, to support their 333 athletes. Next is Brazil who has registered 50 doctors for their 259 athletes, followed by the US who has registered 46 doctors for 530 athletes. Eighteen doctors will be supporting the British team's 542 sports men and women.

In total, the GMC has granted temporary registration to 849 doctors – 83% male and 17% female - from 141 countries.

The GMC says this is by far the largest number of doctors it has registered for a single event - another 29 applications are currently being processed.

Other figures show that:

  • Spain, Poland, Canada, Australia, Croatia, Russia and Sweden have registered between ten and 35 doctors.
  • Ireland, India, Egypt, Iran and Kazakhstan have registered fewer than ten doctors each.
  • Fiji, Micronesia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Nepal, Zambia, Honduras and Iraq have registered just one doctor each.
  • More than 40 applications have also either been withdrawn or rejected by the GMC including one by Mexico for a vet and another by Venezuela for a masseuse.

The GMC has worked closely with LOCOG's Dr Richard Budgett who is Team GB's Chief Medical Officer and an Olympic gold medallist, as well as representatives from the International Olympic Committee, to ensure the registration process for overseas doctors was as simple as possible.

All of the doctors registered meet the criteria for them to be added temporarily to the UK medical register.

The guidelines state that overseas doctors may only treat non-UK nationals for the duration of the Games.

Registration can be checked online via the GMC's website and the List of Registered Medical Practitioners will show the event that the doctor is attending.

Niall Dickson, Chief Executive of the General Medical Council, said: 'Doctors play a vital role at all levels in all sports and of course at the highest level their contribution is critical. London 2012 is a great national occasion and we are proud to have played our small part by enabling overseas doctors to come here and support their Olympic athletes during the Games.'

Commenting on the GMC's registration process, Cindy Chang, Chief Medical Officer for the US Olympic Team, added: 'The entire GMC team was very thorough and helpful when registering our team doctors for the London Olympic Games.

'We appreciate the ability to be able to treat our Team USA athletes while in the UK, and I am delighted to be in London and have the opportunity to collaborate with both my national and international sports medicine colleagues.'

Source: ©GMC

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