Pediatricians remember that their responsibility is not to justify school faults

If the child is sick, visit the pediatrician It becomes essential. It is a cause and effect relationship, but to what extent does the responsibility of these professionals extend? It is clear that they are responsible for reviewing the child's symptoms and establishing a diagnosis to recommend appropriate treatment to the child's parents.

However, the pediatricians they also deal, in some cases, with other tasks that deviate from the strictly medical. This is the case of signing medical receipts in the case of lost school days or absence of an exam. A practice that arouses the distrust of some of these professionals as they point out from the Madrid Medical Association.


It is not your responsibility

In a press release, the Medical Association of Madrid recalls those of primary care professionals, family doctors and pediatricians, who do not have the responsibility of extend supporting documents for the lack of attendance to class or extracurricular activities. Although there is an obligation to provide a document on the state of health, there is no obligation to do so with a certificate to explain the absence of the smallest.

"The parents, on their own initiative or at the suggestion of the teachers, request these justifications from the doctors for not having attended their child to class or for them to repeat an exam or extracurricular activity and we must make aware to all the involved parties that this is not the responsibility of the doctor ", explains Dr. Belén Padilla Ortega, vice-president of the Illustrious Official College of Physicians of Madrid, ICOMEM.


In this sense the doctor Concha Bonet, member of the Deontology Committee, suggests explaining to parents that there is no obligation to make these supporting documents and that in any case they should be those who explain to teachers why their children have not attended school or have been absent from school. an extracurricular activity

Commitment of parents and teachers

To this end, the commitment of teachers in believe in the word of the parents before the justification of the parents when explaining the reasons for an absence. At this point, parents must also be responsible and only allow their children to miss class or other extracurricular activities for important reasons such as a health problem or reasons of force majeure.


Finally, the ICOEM, reminds that a proof to a certain extent violates privacy of patients, in this case of children. "The knowledge of a pathology, treatment, clinical or family background of a student are data that can not require the center unless they are duly justified," says this agency in its press release.

Schools can only collect personal information of students for the development of their work, therefore "in no case can teachers request clinical reports". Remember that the right to privacy is strict in relation to health, so not only should this information be requested, but it should not be stored, nor without guaranteeing security measures for this data by the school.

Damián Montero

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