A simple guide to the CPD credits system for GPs in the UK

The RCGP has developed a CPD credits system to help GPs across the UK to provide evidence of their learning for revalidation.

The key points are:

  • One hour of education equates to one learning credit, and this can include time spent on planning and reflection.
  • The GP must demonstrate the learning achieved from the activity and its relevance to their work.
  • They can then double the number of credits they claim for this activity if they are also able to show an impact on their practice.
  • The impact could be on the GP themselves, on their patients, or on the service they provide.

Each GP is expected to collect a minimum of 50 credits in a year and 250 credits over the five-year cycle of revalidation.

Credits are self-assessed and verified by the GP’s appraiser at their annual appraisal meeting.

The RCGP says the pattern of credits should, over the years, reflect the working life of the GP and show a broad range of general practice learning.

Example of how to claim CPD credits

The following example from the RCGP Guide to the Credit-Based CPD system (January 2010), shows how one learning experience could result in different credit claims for two GPs.

  • Two GPs attend a one-hour meeting on heart failure and acquire the knowledge that certain beta-blockers are beneficial to patients with the condition.
  • The first GP records his notes from the meeting in his appraisal folder and claims one CPD credit.
  • The second GP does the same but she also includes two patient case studies demonstrating her introduction of beta-blockers in heart failure. This demonstration of benefit, or impact, allows her to claim two CPD credits.

Find out more about CPD credits and revalidation at our Revalidation Online Resource.

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