In a revalidation video (watch the video below), the RCGP's medical director for revalidation Professor Mike Pringle outlined that GPs who have taken a career break will still be involved in the revalidation process.
He said after a career break a GP should be able to submit an ordinary portfolio if they have had at least three years of appraisals in a five-year cycle, have kept up to date for at least three years and have at least 200 half-day clinical sessions over the five years.
Professor Pringle said where a GP cannot meet these requirements they should put forward any evidence they have to the responsible officer, who may then consult with the RCGP or the GMC.
He said: ‘We recognise that there are many people who have career breaks for one reason or another; be it pregnancy, childcare, illness, or working overseas.
‘It's very important that revalidation doesn't disadvantage those people and yet, of course, we have to make sure that everyone who is working as a GP is up to date and fit to practice.'
Professor Pringle also said it would not be the ‘end of the world' if a doctor had their licence discontinued because they are out of practice at the time their licence comes up for revalidation.
‘Doctors in this situation will be able to apply to have their licence restored when they're ready to go back into practice,' he said. ‘If you are out of practice for a sustained period of time, our advice is, and it's the advice of the deaneries too, that you should undergo an assessment followed by a re-entry course.'