The GMC will introduce the licence to practice in Autumn 2009. Licensing will be the first step towards the introduction of revalidation.

The information to support periodic revalidation and relicensing is the annual appraisal and local certification process, which will provide the GMC with the assurances on which to base a decision about whether to revalidate a doctor. A designated Responsible Officer from each employer will hold the responsibility for making recommendations to the GMC on whether all employed doctors across all specialties should be revalidated.

Crucially, the GMC is seeking assurance that the systems and procedures employed in these processes have been quality assured in order to ensure that an organisation’s appraisal and clinical governance systems satisfy the requirements of revalidation. The Responsible Officer will be held to account for those systems.

It is our experience that appraisal processes can fall short of the standards required in many Trusts. For example, a choice of appraiser may not be offered or systems may not be in place to identify issues which could impact upon the fairness of the appraisal. Equally, training and feedback for appraisers is often limited.

The GMC will not implement the Responsible Officer role until it is satisfied that an employer’s systems are robust, free from unfair discrimination and deliver the necessary requirements of revalidation. Consequently, employers must be in a position to demonstrate that their systems and procedures have been subjected to external quality assurance.

How can Iodem help

Our unique blend of skills, which includes risk managers and quality assurance experts, can assist employers by providing impartial, independent and external review of internal systems and processes. Initially, this will allow the introduction of revalidation by confirming they are robust and effective. Subsequently, it will confirm that they remain fit for purpose.

Our reviews of systems and processes are undertaken by individuals who are abreast of current developments in this fast changing area. Our service has been carefully designed to identify good practice alongside fulfilment of GMC benchmarking preconditions. It has the advantage of covering all doctors and is not limited by specialty. It includes:-

  • Clinical leads.
  • Lay involvement to reassure the general public.
  • Grey Panther experts to test processes and systems to identify good and poor practice across a wide range of areas.
  • Identification of issues which would cause concern to the GMC along with a road map towards resolution.
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