CPD is about structured learning, beyond the
years of formal training. It applies to consultants, associate
specialists, speciality doctors, staff grades, and other
non-training grades. Done effectively, it can improve patient
outcomes by positively influencing the behaviour of
The recommendation that psychiatrists formally
record at least 50 hours per annum arises from the understanding
within the medical fraternity that this is the minimum requirement
to keep up with good medical practice. The previous policy had been
in force since 2001, but so that CPD is modernized in line with the
expectations of our members, patients and the GMC, a new policy has
been agreed by Council and will be in force during 2011.
The policy takes into account what
psychiatrists do in their routine work, as clinicians, medical
managers, teachers, and academics. It also incorporates the use of
the internet as a valuable resource for modern day learning through
e-lectures, e-modules, podcasts and e-reading.
The College recognises the work of the peer
group as being important in maintaining quality assurance for CPD,
and therefore the new policy gives credits for engaging in peer
groups.To some extent, CPD is based on members of the College
scheme making accurate reflections on their activities, and telling
us what works for them and what doesn’t. The College’s CPD weblink
has been updated to make that interaction easier.