LGA responds to introduction of medical examiners

Cllr Simon Blackburn, Chair of the Local Government Association’s Safer and Stronger Communities Board, responds to the Government’s announcement of the introduction of medical examiners and reforms to death certification in England.


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Responding to the Government’s announcement of the introduction of medical examiners and reforms to death certification in England, Cllr Simon Blackburn, Chair of the Local Government Association’s Safer and Stronger Communities Board, said:

"Councils fully support proposals to improve the quality and accuracy of death certification and avoid unnecessary distress for grieving families with unanswered questions about the cause of death.

“There is a clear need to provide independent scrutiny of all deaths not referred to the coroner in order to prevent a repeat of the crimes committed by Dr Harold Shipman and to improve the accuracy of the medical certificate of the cause of deaths.

“Improving scrutiny and delivery of medical practices and strengthening safeguards are key parts of the effective clinical governance of the health service. We are therefore pleased that the Government has accepted our call for medical examiners to be introduced through the NHS and not as a new responsibility for local government.”