If you are absent from work for a week or less you do not need a doctor's certificate (Med 3 or 5). There is no statutory requirement for doctors to issue medical certificates for the first seven days of sickness absence. Certification may, however, be required by your employer. This can be done using self-certification form SC2 which is available either from your employer or from the Post Office.
If a certificate is required for this initial period a private certificate can be issued but a fee will be charged.
After the first week of sickness, certificates are issued as part of the consultation with the doctor. If you are under the care of a hospital doctor you should ask them to issue certificates to cover time spent as an inpatient or outpatient.
PLEASE NOTE: Patients, please note that with effect from February 2016 it will be a legal requirement for all surgeries to provide data to Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) on the number of Fit for Work forms that they have provided. This data will automatically be extracted from our information system. Please note that the data will be fully anonymised and will include:
- The number of computer-generated fit notes issued;
- The number of patients recorded as 'unfit' or 'maybe fit' for work;
- Fit note duration;
- Health condition type;
- Location - this will be more specific than e.g. BH23 or Christchurch;
- Whether your GP recommended any workplace adaptations in order to help your return to work.
We have a legal requirement under the Data Protection Act (DPA) to inform our patients that his data will be provided.
Please note that if you have previously recorded an objection for any of your data to be shared, then this will be respected in this situation also.
If you would like any further information on the Data Protection Act, please follow this link: https://www.gov.uk/data-protection/the-data-protection-act
If you would like any further information on Fit Notes, please follow this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/fit-note
If you would like any further information on the work of HSCIC, please follow this link: http://www.hscic.gov.uk/
If you would like to complete a Dissent from Secondary use of Patient Identifiable Data Form, please request this from the Reception Team.