Performers list

Myth: The GMC requirements for revalidation are the same as NHS requirements to stay on the performers list

GMC requirements are about revalidation. Meeting the GMC requirements provides a positive affirmation of the demonstration of continued competence for any doctor, whatever their scope of practice, whether private or NHS or voluntary. Doctors must demonstrate that they are up-to-date and fit to practise across their whole scope of practice to revalidate successfully. 

The national performers list requirements vary slightly between NHS England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and are about being fit for purpose to work in the NHS. They vary from the GMC requirements for revalidation. Responsible officers and suitable persons are expected to be very clear about the difference between the two. 

Myth: I cannot stay on the performers list if I work fewer than 40 clinical sessions for the NHS

Doctors who do low volumes of clinical work are often providing very valuable services to patients but need to be confident that they can demonstrate that they remain up-to-date and fit to practise at what they do when they have a relative lack of experiential learning. By working through the series of factors in a Low Volume of Clinical Work Structured Reflective Template (LVCW SRT) they are supported in demonstrating their continued competence and describing the safeguards that are in place to protect patients. The LVCW SRT is based on the idea that how much clinical work you need to do to remain clinically up-to-date and fit to practise is variable and depends on several factors, including:

  • your prior knowledge and experience
  • how recently you reduced your volume of clinical work
  • your scope of practice in the role
  • how well supported you are and the governance arrangements for your role
  • the CPD and QIA you are able to do in your role
  • your engagement in annual appraisal
  • other medical activities you are doing which may provide overlapping experience

It is structured as a tool to help you think through how these factors apply in your circumstances. Many GPs report relief and reassurance after working through the template and realising that their practice is well protected.

If you do some NHS clinical work every year, and fulfil the requirement to have an annual appraisal, you will (under current legislation) remain connected to the NHS responsible officer in the area where you do the majority of your NHS clinical work. There is no minimum amount of NHS clinical work required, but 40 sessions per twelve months in work are a threshold below which you are expected to reflect on how you remain safe for such a low volume of clinical work. The RCGP, BMA and NHS England recommend that you reflect on an NHS LVCW SRT, include it as a quality improvement activity in your supporting information and discuss any issues at your appraisal. You are asked to think about the factors that ensure that you remain up-to-date and safe for what you do in your NHS clinical work and to put safeguards in place as part of your PDP if you identify any risk to yourself or to patients.

Similarly, if you do not work for the NHS, but do a low volume of clinical work, below 40 sessions per twelve months in work, the RCGP recommends that you complete a non-NHS LVCW SRT and include it for discussion at your appraisal.

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