When PCTs are abolished in April 2013, the NHS Commissioning Board (NHSCB) will appoint responsible officers (ROs) who will decide whether to recommend a doctor to the GMC for revalidation.
RCGP revalidation lead Professor Nigel Sparrow said that, in order to ensure revalidation for GPs is fair, the college would appoint experts to advise these ROs. The RCGP will also appoint remediation supervisors who will be in charge of overseeing, as well as providing, remediation for GPs who need it, he said.
Professor Sparrow explained that the NHSCB would have 27 local outposts, called local area teams, who would employ at least one RO.
Under the current system, ROs are usually PCT medical directors and former GPs. Under the new structure, ROs in charge of making GP revalidation decisions may not have any experience as a GP.
Professor Sparrow said the RCGP would appoint advisers to provide ROs with generic advice on general practice. So far, 11 have been appointed on a regional basis.
'Our specialty advisers won’t be advising on individual doctors portfolios but will be there to advise on issues relating to a particular aspect of the specialty,' he said. 'It may be something like what sort of supporting information would a GPSI for example in substance misuse require for their portfolio.'
GPC revalidation lead Dr Dean Marshall welcomed the RCGP’s involvement in GP revalidation. ‘I think ROs are going to have an extremely difficult job so we welcome the involvement of the RCGP in supporting ROs,' he said.
Watch Professor Sparrow explain how the NHS reforms will affect revalidation.