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Many thanks to everyone who has replied to this. I'll relay your 
comments to our School of Medicine and Dentistry. I tend to agree with 
the majority of comments that insisting students write by hand seems 
somewhat antediluvian in the twenty-first century.

Simon

Elaine Shillcock wrote:
>  Dear Simon
>
> I have just asked our occupational health doctor here at The University of Manchester and she says that the wording in Tomorrow's Doctors does not specify that writing has to be handwritten.  She says that in many cases, the profession is using typed notes and she does not see how refusing this type of request could be justified.  I just happen to agree with her on this one!  Given the state of writing of many doctors, you might be able to argue on H&S grounds against handwriting!
>
> Elaine
>
>
> **************************************
>
> Elaine Shillcock
> Head of DSO
>
> Tel:    0161 275 7512
> Fax:    0161 275 7018
> Email:  [log in to unmask]
> WWW:    www.manchester.ac.uk/dso
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Discussion list for disabled students and their support staff. [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Michael Woodman
> Sent: 22 March 2010 16:38
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: Fitness to practice and writing by hand
>
> No - so thanks for the heads up! Better look into this one.
>
> Happy to post my findings back to the forum.
>
> Michael Woodman
> Disabilities Coordinator
> Registry, Hunter Wing,
> St. George's, University of London,
> Cranmer Terrace, Tooting,
> SW17 0RE.
>
> www.sgul.ac.uk/disability
>
> Tel: 020 8725 0143
> Fax: 020 8725 0841
> [log in to unmask]
>
>
>
> Simon Jarvis wrote:
>   
>> Hello.
>>
>> A message for those of you with a medical school at your institution.
>>
>> I've had a query from our School of Medicine and Dentistry. They plan 
>> to stipulate in their course handbook that assessment for a particular 
>> part of the course must be by hand, citing the General Medical 
>> Council's recommendations as justification:
>>
>> The General Medical Council in Tomorrow's Doctors Recommendations on 
>> Undergraduate Medical Education  (2009)specifies a requirement for 
>> students in *Section 15 Communicate effectively with patients and 
>> colleagues in a medical context** *para (c) "Communicate by spoken, 
>> written and electronic methods (including medical records), and be 
>> aware of other methods of communication used by patients. Appreciate 
>> the significance of non-verbal communication in the medical consultation".
>>
>> The academic responsible for the handbook has contacted us for advice, 
>> primarily as they had a dyslexic student this year who asked to be 
>> allowed to type this element of the assessment. They granted the 
>> concession this year, but do not plan to do so in the future. The 
>> argument is that this is a "patient safety and fitness to practice 
>> issue and it is important for them to develop the skills whist a 
>> student and before they have responsibility for patient care".
>>
>> I can see that this may have DDA compliance issues, especially as more 
>> and more use of technology is used in everyday life. However, the 
>> recommendations of the GMC seem fairly unambiguous. Have colleagues at 
>> other HEIs with medical schools dealt with this issue?
>>
>> Simon
>> --
>> Simon Jarvis
>> Head of Disability & Dyslexia Service
>> Queen Mary University of London
>>
>> Student and Campus Services
>> Room FB 2.30, Francis Bancroft
>> Mile End Road, London E1 4NS
>> Tel:  020 7882 2765
>> Fax: 020 7882 5223
>> www.scs.qmul.ac.uk
>>     


-- 
Simon Jarvis
Head of Disability & Dyslexia Service
Queen Mary University of London

Student and Campus Services
Room FB 2.30, Francis Bancroft
Mile End Road, London E1 4NS
Tel:  020 7882 2765
Fax: 020 7882 5223
www.scs.qmul.ac.uk