Coronavirus (COVID-19) – update on revalidation  for doctors

As our health services recover from the pandemic, we understand the pressures the profession remains under. We are continuing to support doctors to prepare for revalidation. There are options available for doctors who are not ready to revalidate by their scheduled date.

We’ve answered the main questions doctors have about their revalidation below. But if you have any other queries, please contact our Revalidation team on 0161 923 6602 or email

Should I still have an appraisal during the pandemic?

Appraisal remains an important foundation stone of revalidation and we expect it to take place annually. It is also an important opportunity for you to reflect on the impact of the pandemic on you, and what that means for your wellbeing and development.

However, we also recognise that the approach taken by each designated body towards appraisal may vary according to local pressures. We support this flexible approach, so please follow the advice of your responsible officer.

Will I be able to revalidate if I missed an appraisal due to the pandemic?

If you missed an appraisal because of the pandemic it should not impact your ability to revalidate if you’re otherwise ready.

Responsible officers can make a recommendation to revalidate a doctor with less than five appraisals providing all the required supporting information has been collected and discussed at earlier appraisals in the revalidation cycle.

Will I have to make up any missed appraisals before my responsible officer can make a revalidate recommendation?

No. While appraisals should normally be annual, you don’t have to catch up on an appraisal if there is a legitimate reason for missing it. This includes the pandemic.

What if I’m not ready to revalidate?

Your responsible officer can submit a deferral recommendation if you've not been able to collect all of the required supporting information and discuss it at an appraisal.

A deferral simply postpones your revalidation date, it has no impact on your licence to practise. It does not reflect any concern about your practice or professionalism.

I don’t have a designated body or suitable person. What do I need to do?

If you need a UK licence to practise and you don't have a designated body or suitable person, you need to submit an annual return by your annual return date. Our guidance on completing and submitting your annual return explains what you need to do to engage.

If you’re not currently practising, ask yourself if you need a UK licence to practise. If you don’t, you’ll save time, money and effort by changing your status to registered without a licence. Find out more about managing your registration.

I don’t have a designated body and need to keep my licence. Do I need to sit the revalidation assessment?

Yes. We will write to you when it’s time for you to take your revalidation assessment. Normally, this will be within 12 months of your revalidation date. You will need to book your assessment within four months of us contacting you. Find out more about the revalidation assessment.

Top tips

  • Make sure contact details and designated body details are up to date on GMC Online.
  • If your practice has changed you should use our online tool to check if your connection to your designated body has changed. If it has please update this on GMC Online. 
  • If your responsible officer or their team has requested information from you, you should respond in a timely manner to help them support you with your revalidation.
  • If you need any more information please contact our Revalidation team on 0161 923 6602 (+44 161 923 6602) or email We’ll do our best to help.