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Revalidation will cost taxpayers millions

Professor Peter Rubin ducked your question on how revalidation will be funded with all the skill of a New Labour spin doctor (‘New GMC chair pledges to win over grassroots GPs on revalidation'). But it's an important question that deserves an answer.

I have heard from an informed source that our GMC registration fees may have to increase threefold to pay for revalidation. The fee went up by an inflation-busting 11% this year alone and we are just beginning to prepare for revalidation at this stage.

A large increase in the GMC registration fee will hit doctors hard initially, but eventually the bill will be picked up by the taxpayer via tax relief and the review body mechanism.

Furthermore, the cost to the taxpayer will not stop there, as deanery and PCT clinical governance teams are expanded to cope with the demands of revalidation.

I estimate the extra cost to the taxpayer caused by revalidation will amount to hundreds of millions of pounds annually at a time when the Government badly needs to rein in public expenditure.

I wonder whether the Department of Health would be as keen on the GMC's revalidation proposals if it knew how much they were likely to cost.

From Dr Tim Cantor, locum GP, west Kent


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