Regulating doctors, ensuring good medical practice

Your role in revalidation: What you need to do

This page is in Section 1: Introduction – part of the GMC’s guide for responsible officers and suitable persons on making revalidation recommendations

1.3.4 What you need to do

To make recommendations that are fair, consistent and reliable you need to:

  • ensure that doctors are supported in revalidation by, for example, providing access to supporting information about their practice and to systems of annual appraisal
  • seek reasonable assurance about the doctor’s fitness to practise from the systems of clinical and corporate governance that govern the doctor‘s workplace or workplaces (for example, clinical audits, board review and other systems of internal and external audit)
  • understand the outcomes of a doctor’s appraisals, where they have presented and discussed information collected from the whole of their practice
  • be satisfied that, where appropriate, a doctor has collected information about their practice from all other settings in which they practise, and that it is of sufficient quality
  • reinforce the doctor’s statutory responsibility to engage in the systems and processes that support revalidation.

You should also make sure that you communicate promptly and openly with any doctor about whom you are making a recommendation. You should make sure they know what recommendation you are making before you submit it to the GMC, especially where this is a deferral or non-engagement recommendation.

The GMC’s employer liaison service is available to provide advice when you are making a recommendation. You should make sure that you contact your designated employer liaison adviser before submitting your recommendation if you are facing an uncertainty or need some advice to help you reach an independent judgement. You should speak to your employer liaison adviser or to our revalidation team before making a non-engagement recommendation.

1.3.5 What you are not responsible for

You are not responsible for:

  • making decisions about doctors’ revalidation; while decisions will be based on your recommendations, only the GMC can make a decision about a doctor’s revalidation
  • making recommendations about doctors for whom you are not the RO unless we have agreed you are a suitable person to do this.

You cannot act as the RO for doctors who do not have a prescribed connection to your designated body, as defined in the RO regulations You cannot act as a suitable person for a doctor without prior agreement from the GMC.