Revalidation explained

Revalidation explained

The GPhC's revalidation process, which was suspended during the Covid pandemic, has been reintroduced. The process requires pharmacists and pharmacy technicians to submit their CPD records before their annual registration expires or risk not being allowed to practise. Here we explain what happens, why and what you need to do next. Just click on the numbers to find out more.

Key facts

  • Pharmacists and technicians whose registration renews after 1 October 2022 will need to complete: four CPD records (two of which must be planned events) one peer discussion record one reflective account record (NB if registration renewal is before 30 September 2022 then the regime in place during the Covid pandemic applies and registrants only need to submit a reflective account)

1. What's happening?

Revalidation has replaced the continuing professional development (CPD) requirement for everyone registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council.

Revalidation is the process by which a supervisory body - in this case the GPhC - confirms that the professionals it regulates are fit to practise. This means that not only must pharmacists' and pharmacy technicians' knowledge be up to date, but they must have the attitude and behaviours required to provide safe and effective care.

Revalidation also provides assurance to those who use pharmacy services that pharmacy professionals are meeting the required standards throughout their career.

2. Essential information

When pharmacy professionals renew their GPhC registration they must now submit "revalidation records".

There are three types of revalidation records:

  • CPD entries to encourage reflective practice
  • Peer discussions, which enable the individual to consider his or her work with someone who understands their role
  • Reflective accounts, to explain how the professional believes they meet one or more of the GPhC's professional standards.

Pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are required to submit their completed revalidation entries online at myGPhC for review as part of the annual registration process.

3. Timeline

All pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are emailed by the GPhC annually advising them of the requirements for revalidation. This will include which of the GPhC's standards they needs to address in their Reflective Account.

For 2022-23 they are being advised to look at one of more of the following standards:

  • standard 3 - pharmacy professionals must communicate effectively
  • standard 6 - pharmacy professionals must behave professionally
  • standard 9 - pharmacy professionals must demonstrate leadership

4. Peer discussion

The GPhC has drawn up a form for recording peer discussions, which involves writing down the name, job and contact details of the peer (so they can be contacted as part of the review process to confirm that the conversation took place), and describing how the discussion changed the pharmacy professional’s practice for the better. This should include examples of beneficial outcomes for end-users of the individual's services and can include feedback.

There is no set format for peer discussions. They can take place face-to-face, over the phone, by video calling or web chat, for example. A "peer" can be a fellow pharmacy professional, a colleague who works in the same field, a mentor, or even a group of peers or an expert patient.

The main thing is to choose someone - rather than having an individual allocated - who is able to talk about a pharmacist's or technician's work in a constructive manner. This is also the reason to plan peer discussions, rather than them occurring spontaneously.

5. Reflective account

Individuals cannot choose which GPhC standard will form the basis of their reflective account. The standard(s) to write about will be set by the GPhC each year. The account should briefly describe the registrant's work and users of services, and give one or more examples that illustrate how the chosen standard(s) has or have been met. Not only does this encourage reflective practice but it also helps increase awareness and understanding of the standards as a whole.

6. CPD entries

Pharmacy professionals will be required to submit four CPD records each year, which can be planned or unplanned. At least two must be planned activities.

Planned learning is when the pharmacist or pharmacy technician decides to develop their knowledge and/or skills in advance of carrying out the learning activity.

>Unplanned learning is when an event happens that causes an unscheduled learning activity without prior thought or planning, for example through reading a journal or talking to a colleague.

Entries for unplanned CPD must cover:

  • The activity or event that presented the opportunity to learn something new or refresh understanding. This should be specific (for example, reference to an article in a journal) and the registrant should explain what knowledge and skills have been acquired as a result
  • How the learning has benefited service users (as in planned CPD).

7. Following submission

Once a pharmacist or pharmacy technician has submitted their records they may be selected for review. The selection process is partly random and partly targeted. Registrants are advised if their records are selected for review.

Each year the GPhC will select a random sample of registrants to have their records reviewed. If someone is chosen randomly and their records meet the review criteria, they will not be selected again for two years.

In some cases registrants may have theirr records reviewed more often, for example if:

  • the GPhC has required them previously to undertake remedial measures following a review.
  • the registrant has a history of poor compliance with any of the GPhC's standards
  • records are submitted late without a good reason

8. Revalidation support

Thousands of pharmacists and pharmacy technicians are already using The Pharmacy Network. Why?

  • You can record, save and edit your CPD, reflective accounts and peer discussions in a personal learning log that stays with you throughout your career
  • You can access an extensive library of clinical, practice and management CPD content accessible on all desktop, tablet and mobile devices.

Register today for free to unlock the UK's most widely used online pharmacy learning system and find your solution to revalidation.