The lonely trail to keep up to date

Difficulties encountered by independent practitioners in the pathway to revalidation include confusion, inaccurate information, conflicting advice and time constraints. Kate Lewis and Darren Wiggins guide you through the maze.

The revalidation pathway for independent practitioners can seem a lonely and daunting prospect to tread.  

You are largely responsible for your own direction and supervision that is consistent with your licence to practise. You will not normally be connected to a ‘designated body’.

A designated body is an organisation that provides regular appraisals, clinical governance and support with revalidation for its employees.  

It is responsible for ensuring that all its doctors are up to date and fit to practise and can meet the requirements of revalidation. For this purpose, it must appoint a Responsible Officer (RO) to support the process.  

The designated body is also responsible for reporting figures on a quarterly basis to NHS England. 

It is also responsible for implementing a full suite of policies and procedures to embed quality assurance throughout the appraisal and revalidation process and clinical governance systems. Appraisals are required yearly as part of the revalidation process.  

Failing to engage with the appraisal process will most certainly cause problems and damage your ability to undergo revalid­ation.

The demands upon self-emp­loyed independent practitioners are different from those working in paid employment and pose various challenges in terms of maintaining professional standards, ethics and competence.

If you are not connected to a designated body?