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GPs' threat over appraisals


The Government's revalidation proposals could spark an exodus of GP appraisers.

GPs who have carried out the role are warning that they may pull out if appraisal becomes a summative performance assessment, as proposed in the regulation white paper.

Dr Trefor Roscoe, appraisal clinical lead for Sheffield and a GPC member, said he was 'considering his position' in light of the white paper's recommendations and acknowledged that the changes could be a crisis in the making. 'Most appraisers in Sheffield would be unhappy about the change. It would only take a small reduction in the number of appraisers to destabilise it,' he said.

Dr Anna Wilson, a GP in

Winchester, Hampshire, said: 'I am a GP appraiser and happy to do formative appraisals, but I would stop if I was required to

do summative appraisals.'

An appraisal process encompassing 'both summative and formative components' is proposed as part of the five-yearly 'relicensing' element of revalidation, which the GMC hopes to pilot in 2008 or 2009.

Specialist recertification proposals will be drawn up for each craft by the royal colleges. The RCGP has already ruled out knowledge tests for GPs in its submission to the Good Doctors, Safer Patients consultation.

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