This blog explains in detail all about continuing professional development (CPD) in the context of an medical appraisal.
“Every doctor is required to demonstrate how they keep up-to-date across their whole scope of work”. (GMC)
The doctor should be participating in Continuing Professional Development (CPD) activity that covers the whole scope of his/her professional practice. It is not expected that CPD will be undertaken in every area of professional work every year, but the doctor should ensure all aspects are supported adequately over the five year cycle. There should be a balance of learning methods and experiences. Evidence of CPD taking place with colleagues outside the normal place of employment is extremely important, particularly for those doctors working within a small group and isolated in their day to day work.
Achievement of at least 50 credits per year of the revalidation cycle…is recommended by all Colleges and Faculties as being the minimum time likely to be required in order to remain up-to-date in a doctor’s specialty. It is important to remember, however, that 50 hours of activity does not guarantee that all educational needs have been met. Emphasis should be placed on the quality of the CPD activities rather than simply on the number of hours spent. As part of the supporting information, the doctor should provide reflection on what has been learned from CPD, and how this has influenced practice. The process of reflection will allow the consideration of CPD activity to focus on learning outcomes, rather than on a consideration of time spent.” (AoMRC, 2014)
- If you provide the full range of general medical services in undifferentiated primary care, the RCGP recommend that you demonstrate engagement with at least 50 CPD credits, on average, per twelve months of work, irrespective of the number of sessions worked. If this has not been possible, for any reason, you should provide a detailed reflective note, which includes an explanation, analysis of the implications and future plans to redress the balance (if appropriate), discussed with your appraiser, and agreed with your responsible officer.
- One credit = one hour of learning activity demonstrated by a reflective note on the lessons learned and any changes made.
- If you no longer provide the full range of general medical services in undifferentiated primary care, it may be appropriate for you to provide less than the recommended 50 CPD credits per year, provided that a detailed explanation and justification is reflected on during the appraisal, documented by your appraiser and agreed with your responsible officer.
- For periods of work that are more or less than twelve months, such as when your appraisal month has changed, or there has been a significant period of time out of work, such as maternity or sick leave, the RCGP recommends that you should demonstrate a number of CPD credits proportionate to the time you have spent in work, and provide an explanation that has been reflected on during the appraisal, as above.
- Keeping a structured learning log to capture CPD credits (including date, title, time taken, key lessons learned and reflection on impact on practice or any changes made as a result of learning) is recommended.
- There is no need for you to scan, or provide, copies of certificates for appraisal and revalidation where learning has been demonstrated through an appropriate reflective note (although it may be best practice to keep certificates for statutory and mandatory training defined by an employing organisation, so that you could provide them on demand).
- The former provision for GPs to ‘double’ their CPD credits by demonstrating impact led, in some cases, to disputes over credits rather than focus on demonstrating impact. This will be phased out, such that ‘impact credits’ of this type are no longer included after 31 March 2016. This will bring the guidance for GPs in line with other medical specialties by the second cycle of revalidation.
- The importance of demonstrating impact will be enhanced by the new definition of a CPD credit and the opportunity to claim for all learning activities associated with demonstrating impact.
- You are encouraged to reflect on any impact that your learning (from any CPD, QIA, Significant Events (SEs), feedback, complaints or compliments) has had on your practice and to include it in the CPD log as separate learning activity, allocating accurately the time taken, using the same definition:
- One credit = One hour of learning activity demonstrated by a reflective note on the lessons learned and any changes made. This gives you an appropriate way to demonstrate the time spent and the impact of the learning, which is more flexible and proportionate than the previous ‘doubling’ of CPD credits for demonstrating impact.
- It is best practice to document a balance of learning methods and experiences over the five year cycle.
- It is best practice to note any participation in CPD with colleagues outside your normal place of employment over the five year cycle.
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