GMC revalidation questionnaire asks patients about GP politeness

The GMC has released patient, colleagues and self-assessment questionnaires that will be used as part of the GP revalidation process starting later this year.

Niall Dickson said: ‘For the vast majority of doctors, the feedback they receive will be overwhelmingly positive'
Niall Dickson said: ‘For the vast majority of doctors, the feedback they receive will be overwhelmingly positive'

As part of revalidation and appraisal GPs are expected to seek feedback from colleagues and patients and demonstrate that they have reflected on that feedback.

The GMC has now released questionnaires designed to help GPs collect that feedback. Although the use of the GMC questionnaires is not mandatory, doctors who use a different feedback tool must ensure it meets GMS standards.

The questionnaires ask patients to review their GP in areas such as politeness and whether they felt listened to. Colleagues are asked to rate GPs on areas such as diagnosis, supervising colleagues and effective time management.

GPs also will be asked to assess themselves on areas such as clinical knowledge, their ability to involve patients and how honest and trustworthy they are.

All three questionnaires will ask whether the GP is fit to practise medicine.

Researchers at Exeter University's Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry in Devon, who helped to develop the questionnaires, said that for the best results a doctor needed feedback from a minimum of 34 patients and 15 colleagues.

GMC chief executive Niall Dickson said: ‘For the vast majority of doctors, the feedback they receive will be overwhelmingly positive but there will also be things they can learn, and insights they can gain about their practice. When revalidation comes in, we will be the first nation in the world to require every doctor to obtain feedback from their patients and colleagues in this way.

‘The questionnaires we’re publishing today are free for employers and doctors to use. They’ve been extensively tested, and if administered properly, should enable doctors to understand how their practice is viewed by those they treat and those they work with.

‘We regard this as the start of a process – medical practice relies on trust between doctors and their patients, and between healthcare professionals - their views matter and I am sure that over time more ways will be found to gather them.’

The GMC also has guidance to help employers administer these questionnaires and assist appraisers to interpret feedback for doctors.

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