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CPD requirement for revalidation here to stay, says RCGP

By Gareth Iacobucci

The requirement for GPs to collect CPD learning credits is likely to survive the Government's changes to revalidation, the RCGP has revealed.

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley's decision to halt the rollout of revalidation and extend the piloting period for a further year has raised uncertainty over the various CPD components that GPs have been told to amass for their portfolios, including the collection of 50 learning credits per year for the five year cycle.

But Professor Mike Pringle, the college's revalidation lead, told Pulse this week that the requirement to collect learning credits would not be removed, because the RCGP's proposals to give GPs the chance to earn double points if they can demonstrate the impact of learning made it one of the less onerous aspects of revalidation.

He said: ‘We are giving people the chance to earn double points if they have an impact, and therefore, since that deceases the number of time taken to get the points, it would be very odd if that was thought to be needing changing from the Government's perspective.'

‘At the moment I'm not expecting any changes to learning credits.'

Professor Pringle advised GPs that they should continue to record their learning credits as a key part of their annual appraisal.

‘All GPs should be recording their professional development,' he said. 'The new thing is just to record the time beside it, and then, through the next couple of years, get used to the idea of reflecting back and saying, ‘did I do anything useful with that time?', and rewarding on the impact.'

Dr Mike Mead, a GP in Leicester, said he believed that the strengthened appraisal system based on CPD credits was here to stay.

He said: ‘This is about proving that you're maintaining your professional competence and expertise. Appraisal is still compulsory. It's not about tick box revalidation, it's about successful appraisal.'

‘It's also about protecting yourself if ever trouble comes along to show that you are kept up-to-date. As appraisal gets stricter, if you haven't got the credits, it's not going to support you.'

Professor Mike Pringle: CPD requirement is likely to stay Professor Mike Pringle: CPD requirement is likely to stay