The postponement puts off the earliest date by which doctors can face the full force of revalidation until 2014.
Under plans for revalidation, licences to practise must be renewed every five years. But the GMC is planning to introduce revalidation gradually and still has no firm start date.
However, changes to the Medical Act which cannot be incorporated before 2009 have forced the postponement.
The White Paper Trust Assurance and Safety required the GMC to issue the new licences as soon as 'practicable'.
Doctors will need to collect evidence to support their revalidation and to take part in an annual appraisal as well as a 360 degs (multi-source) feedback.
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