RCGP confirms plan to slim down revalidation

GPs undergoing revalidation will have to submit only one multi-source feedback (MSF) questionnaire and one patient survey every five years, the RCGP has confirmed.

Pringle: response to GPC input
Pringle: response to GPC input

RCGP revalidation lead Professor Mike Pringle said the policy decision had been made, and would be outlined in the next version of the college's revalidation guide, due to be released before Christmas.

It was previously expected that GPs would have to submit two MSF forms and two patient surveys every five years.

Concerns about the amount of supporting evidence GPs had to submit were first raised in evaluations of the RCGP revalidation pilots published in July.

They found that while most of the data needed for appraisal was easily available, doctors had to do a significant amount of extra work for MSF and patient surveys (GP, 22 July 2010).

Professor Pringle said the change was a 'key area' that would make a difference to GPs in revalidation.

'The decision has largely come in response to the GPC, which has been helpful in looking at the guidance and at where it thinks the proposals can be streamlined,' he said.

'It is currently my intention that the next version of the revalidation guide will reduce the expectation of the MSF and patient surveys.'

GPC negotiator Dr Richard Vautrey said the decision was a 'welcome change'. But he said the success of MSF hinged on the development of MSF tools.

Dr Vautrey said: 'We had raised concerns about the frequency of MSF, so it is good that these concerns have been listened to.

'But all this remains to be predicated on valid MSF feed-back tools. If you have to repeatedly ask the same people for views about an individual who happens to be their boss, this could be a difficult situation to place people in.'

Dr Vautrey said small practices in particular might struggle. 'With revalidation we want to see a consistency of approach,' he said. 'Any proposed tool for MSF has to be appropriate for all of general practice.'

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