15 October 2018
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I am returning to practice after a period of absence, what should I do for my CPD?

It is important that you engage with CPD on your return to practice. You could complete a Professional Development Plan to assist you with planning your learning needs and CPD for the PCS year, including meeting any shortfalls advised to you from previous PCS years.

Your engagement with CPD ensures that you are keeping your knowledge and skills up to date and this helps you to be as competent as possible in your role as a doctor. Equally, it is important to balance this with self-care and therefore if you are returning to practice after being out of the loop for a while, we recommend that you try and engage in CPD where possible but it is not to put yourself under unrealistic pressure to make up all shortfalls straight away. You should initially aim to meet the minimum requirements for the current PCS year and work on making up shortfalls once you have achieved this.

You may find the suggestions below useful in assisting you with this:

  • External CPD: If getting out and about is an issue, (e.g. if you have young children or live in a rural area), online learning offers a great opportunity to achieve CPD without having to travel. You will find a range of eLearning modules on the ICGP website and these are available to ICGP members free of charge. You could also participate in our webinars.
  • Internal CPD: You could consider forming a journal club with GP colleagues who are in a similar situation to discuss how you might apply topics to practice. These discussions can take place at a time and place that suits you or via an online conference system like Skype or Zoom. You can also record your Professional Development Plan for internal CPD credits where you discuss it with a colleague and add it to your ePortfolio before the 31st of October.
  • Audit: You could consider undertaking a quality improvement project such as a review of record keeping, updating practice software or carrying out a review of health and safety standards in the practice. You might also like to consider a patient survey as a useful quality improvement tool. A comprehensive list of audit samples is available on www.icgp.ie/audit


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