The UK's two leading medico legal reporting agencies have developed a new 'kite mark' of independence for medical experts.
Premex Group and Premier Medical Group have endorsed the newly created Certificate in Medical Reporting, so that instructing parties receive the added reassurance of an accreditation promising the very highest standards and professional integrity of those to whom it is awarded.
Medical professionals seeking the accreditation must complete one or two modules depending upon their expert speciality. The first module confirms that the expert fully understands the Civil Procedure Rules Part 35 and the second module confirms their awareness of the latest relevant medical literature regarding whiplash associated disorder.
The Certificate in Medical Reporting or "CertMR" will be awarded on successful completion, which will be clearly visible on every expert's report.
Donald Fowler, Managing Director of Premex Services, explains: "The CertMR accreditation will provide added reassurance to all stakeholders in personal injury cases that the doctors who prepare medical reports on behalf of Premex Services and Premier Medical Group and their clients have met a rigorous set of agreed standards."
"It is important to recognise that there are bad apples in every barrel and as industry leaders we are committed to working with only the best possible medical experts, including only those who take their independence and position as officers of the court very seriously. This accreditation, endorsed by our two firms and in part developed by the leading legal training business Bond Solon, will further raise the bar in terms of the quality of the medical evidence used in personal injury cases and set the benchmark for others to reach."
Between them Premex Services and Premier Medical Group procure an estimated 50% of all medical evidence required in personal injury cases in the UK. The independent and GMC registered experts which both companies use to prepare personal injury medical reports have a high level of knowledge and competence in their field. They are able to provide fast, professional and importantly, independent reports to ensure the claims process is fair and based on medical opinion sustainable under rigorous scrutiny.
Stuart Sheehy, Managing Director at Premier Medical Group, adds: "We know the medico-legal experts both our companies use do a great job and uphold the highest standards of professionalism and independence. Their work provides benefits across the board - to the companies or organisations subject to personal injury claims, the legal firms representing both parties, and to the people who have been injured. But with this jointly agreed accreditation we can begin to put in place more formal recognition of their knowledge and expertise.
"In the case of whiplash, we have sought to ensure medical experts on our panels have access to all the latest studies and evidence to help them make informed and objective decisions on injuries. It will help to overcome a growing perception that every claim for whiplash is somehow a fraudulent claim."
The online modular training course becomes available in December 2012 and over 3,000 practicing NHS medical experts from both companies' panels are expected to complete it.
Premex Services is part of the global ExamWorks family and is a leading provider of independent medical reports and rehabilitation services used to assist in resolving legal claims in relation to personal injury. Formed in 1996 it employs more than 250 people, handles over 140,000 cases a year and works with 4500 medical experts across the UK. UK Independent Medical is also owned by ExamWorks and is Premex Group's sister company in the UK.
Premier Medical Group is owned by the Capita plc, a leading FTSE 100 company and provides medical reports and screening services to the legal sector and insurance industry. Premier Medical Group processes over 220,000 cases a year and employs over 300 case handlers across operational sites in Ludlow and Durham.
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