The first year of the GDC’s enhanced CPD scheme has now come to an end. You will know that the new scheme saw changes to the required number of verifiable CPD hours and a mandatory requirement to have a personal development plan (PDP) in place. You will by now also have made your first CPD statement under the new scheme.
Other requirements within the enhanced-CPD scheme are that you must keep a CPD record and the CPD that you do must fit into one of four widely-defined categories or development outcomes:
· A – Communication
This relates to effective communication with patients, team members and others such as NHS officials, suppliers or academics. It might include consent, dealing with complaints or whistleblowing
· B – Management
This covers how you manage your own work and your interaction with colleagues whether as a team leader or team member. Learning should focus on how management can be effective, constructive and put the interests of patients first
· C – Knowledge
Ensuring that you maintain and develop your knowledge and related skills within your field of practice
· D – Skills
Maintaining your skills and how you show this to patients so that they have confidence in your work and the profession at large.
The underlying philosophy is one of ‘plan, do, reflect, record’. You should consider which CPD you need to undertake in relation to your practice. This might include updates on legislation, an area where you have identified a training need for yourself, or an area of interest into which you wish to move. ECPD is intended to encourage registrants (you and your team) to think about what is personally relevant in terms of training and development, consider how to best obtain the CPD and reflect on its usefulness and the changes to practice that might have resulted from the CPD activity.
Ensure you are aware of the enhanced CPD requirements (and whether you are affected by the transitional arrangements from the previous scheme, which depending on your CPD cycle may run until December 2021):
· Consider your CPD needs for the coming year and the rest of your cycle, and include them in the PDP (the BDA’s CPD hub at cpd.bda.org provides a simple template PDP). Revisit the PDP if things change.
· Choose CPD which is relevant to your field of practice and which links to the areas identified in the PDP.
· Consider the GDC’s development outcomes.
· Ensure the provider you have chosen will provide you with evidence that the CPD is verifiable. Feed back to the provider if you feel the evidence is lacking something that is needed.
· Reflect on the CPD undertaken, how it has changed your practice or how it has been otherwise relevant. Indicate on the CPD log that reflection has taken place, but retain reflection separate from your CPD record.
· Keep your records safe.
· Make your annual CPD declaration in good time, in line with requirements and ensure that it tallies with your log.
· Throughout the cycle, keep an eye on the hours done and the hours necessary. Set yourself reminders to consider your PDP.
· Take advice from the BDA and your defence organisation if you feel that you cannot comply for any reason.
By James Dawson, Head of Advice Publications in the Practice Support Team at the BDA.