Revalidation was introduced in the UK by the GMC in 2012 as a means of ensuring doctors continue to meet its Good Medical Practice guidelines. With many locum doctors undertaking short periods of work in different settings and often having one-off contact with staff and patients, some may find this process particularly challenging. RIG Locums has put together the following tips to help locums breeze through the revalidation process.
Get into the habit of reflecting on your learning
It may sound obvious, but the best way to prepare for your revalidation is not to leave things until the last minute. Every locum shift is an opportunity to gather evidence for your portfolio and appraisal, so why not take a notepad to every shift so you can record and reflect on learning in the workplace. Whether it’s a test result that you discuss with another colleague, or a rare medical condition you have come across for the first time – learning and problem-solving is a skill that you most likely use on a day-to-day basis, perhaps without even realising. Make a note of these events and ask yourself:
- What was good and bad about the event?
- What did you learn?
- How will you intend to use these learnings in future practice?
- Do you have any learning requirements to ensure you are equipped to deal with similar scenarios in the future?
By reflecting in this way, you will build up evidence as well as learning requirements for your personal development plan (PDP) in no time.
Continuing professional development
Use the learning requirements noted in your day-to day-practice as the basis of your PDP, scheduling the required learning activities over the year. Collect evidence of each activity, such as:
- Course details and notes reflecting your learning
- Details of clinical meetings, multidisciplinary team meetings and peer reviews
- Contribution to learning or peer support groups
- Your reflections gathered in day-to-day practice
- Peer reviews with other locum doctors
Remember that your appraisal and portfolio should cover all of the different types of roles that you have had throughout the appraisal period, rather than the different places that you have worked.
Collecting patient and colleague feedback
Although this is particularly challenging for shorter locum placements, it is acceptable to collect feedback from patients after a single appointment. To make an impression on patients and ensure they remember you, don’t forget to introduce yourself and wear a name badge.
After competing each locum assignment, it would be prudent to ask your employing trust for feedback whilst your placement is still fresh in their minds. If you were placed through RIG Locums, we will also be pleased to ask for feedback on your behalf.
- For more information about revalidation requirements, please visit the GMC website http://www.gmc-uk.org/doctors/revalidation.asp.