How we are taking revalidation forward

We have made significant progress to address the recommendations in Sir Keith Pearson’s review of revalidation.  You can read a progress report that we published in January.

We want revalidation to be a positive experience for all doctors and want to maximise how it can contribute to professional development and safer, high quality patient care. We understand the workload pressures that doctors continue to face and hope these developments will support doctors and others involved in appraisals for revalidation better understand what is required and what is expected of them.

Updated guidance for doctors

We've worked with doctors, appraisers, responsible offices and others, to update the guidance on the supporting information that all licensed doctors need to collect, reflect on and discuss at their annual whole practice appraisal for revalidation.

We've not changed our requirements but have clarified what is mandatory for appraisal and revalidation, and how that may differ from additional requirements of employers, royal colleges or faculties. We've also provided more guidance on the balance between quality and quantity of supporting information, so doctors don't feel pressured to gather too much evidence.

While this guidance emphasises the importance of reflection for learning and development, later this year we will publish additional advice to address the concerns and misunderstandings we’ve heard about the use of reflective notes, following the case of Dr Bawa-Garba. For our part, we have been clear that we won't ask a doctor for their reflective notes as part of our fitness to practise procedures; and we have also called for doctors' reflections to be legally protected.

Updated guidance for responsible officers and suitable persons

This guidance gives responsible officers and suitable persons advice on what they need to consider when making revalidation recommendations about doctors. One of the key changes includes a new system to ensure that recommendations are being made fairly and appropriately in cases where a doctor has raised public interest concerns.

Information sharing principles

We've developed new information sharing principles cover how organisations should share information when doctors move between designated bodies or work in multiple settings. The guidance also outlines the expectations on doctors for declaring information about their practice. The principles aim to ensure that concerns relating to patient safety and trust are shared reliably and consistently across the healthcare system.

New resources on our website

Our new website will help doctors and others find information about revalidation more easily. We have developed a video, tools and advice for specific groups of doctors - for example, new registrants, doctors working in multiple settings, retiring doctors and those on a break from UK practice. We’ve also improved information about revalidation for patients and the public with an aim of increasing their awareness and involvement in it.