The RCGP is boosting value for money of its membership by publishing free to members online education materials that can count towards revalidation.
A vociferous minority of GPs resign their college member-ship claiming it is not worth the fee. Last year 500 members resigned and saved their £461 annual charge.
The college says that 36,000 GPs in the UK are members. There are 57,664 doctors on the GMC's GP register.
The college is about to release its first two e-learning materials, charging non-members £79.
The essential knowledge update, revised twice a year, and the results of the knowledge challenge - an applied knowledge test - can be put in a GP's portfolio ready for revalidation.
The knowledge updates cover key developments in general practice in the past six months.
College members can access the materials free of charge. But it will not be compulsory to use the materials for revalidation.
The move by the college pre-empts a decision on how revalidation will be funded.
Dr Colin Hunter, RCGP treasurer, said that the principles of funding revalidation have still to be decided.
It is a matter for discussion whether individuals would bear any of the cost themselves, he said. The college will be responsible for quality assuring revalidation. But Dr Hunter said that college members would not bear the quality assurance costs alone.
'That cost needs to be borne by the entire profession,' he said.
'If the principle is that the costs should be borne across the profession, I don't see us doing differential costs for members.'
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