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Checklist for responsible officers

As an responsible officer you must:

  • ask doctors new to your organisation to provide you with a summary of their revalidation history, including their previous designated body
  • maintain an accurate list of all doctors with a prescribed connection to your organisation and keep your list in GMC Connect up to date
  • understand that you can only make recommendations for doctors that you have a connection to
  • understand that connections are defined by law: you cannot choose whether to connect to a doctor, and a doctor cannot choose whether to connect to you
  • put arrangements in place so you can:
    • make sure every doctor connected to your organisation has an annual appraisal that covers the whole of their practice and meets the requirements of the Good medical practice framework for appraisal and revalidation.
    • check the doctor has collected all the supporting information and this has been discussed and reflected on at their appraisal
    • receive information from systems of clinical and corporate governance; and complaints, compliments and feedback from all of the organisations where the doctor works
    • be alerted to any fitness to practise concerns
    • make sure a doctor has complied with any GMC conditions or undertakings, or locally agreed restrictions on their practice
  • understand the criteria for each type of recommendation and the statements you must confirm when making your recommendation
  • make recommendations that are fair, consistent and reliable by considering all of the above information and contacting the Employer Liaison Service if you need advice to help you reach a judgement, plan to make a recommendation of non-engagement, a second consecutive recommendation to defer, or are aware that a doctor has raised a public interest concern and you are considering a recommendation of non-engagement or deferral . For more information about public interest concerns, please see Appendix B of The GMC protocol for making revalidation recommendations: Guidance for responsible officers and suitable persons.
  • keep a record of how you have made a recommendation about a doctor and understand you are accountable for recommendations you make and that you cannot delegate decision making to others
  • understand how you, or a delegated colleague, submit your recommendations via GMC Connect and ensure that this is done for each doctor who has a prescribed connection to your organisation, or for whom you act as a suitable person, within the notice period and on or before their revalidation date
  • confirm promptly to the doctor the recommendation you have made about them
  • understand the GMC makes the decision about the doctor’s revalidation, based on your recommendation and any other relevant information we hold
  • understand the relationship between revalidation and fitness to practise, that is:
    • revalidation does not replace or override existing procedures for dealing with concerns about doctors’ fitness to practise
    • recommendations should not be used as a way of raising concerns about a doctor’s fitness to practise
    • any fitness to practise concerns should be discussed with your employer liaison adviser as soon as they arise, who will advise you on fitness to practise thresholds for referral to the GMC
    • records of fitness to practise evaluations, including processes for responding to concerns and other local investigations, should be kept.