The Royal College of Radiologists (RCR) responds to the publication of Sir Keith Pearson’s review of medical revalidation

Friday 13 January 2017

The Royal College of Radiologists (RCR) welcomes the publication by the General Medical Council (GMC), of Sir Keith Pearson’s review of medical revalidation, Taking revalidation forward: Improving the process of relicensing for doctors. The RCR leads, educates and supports doctors who are training and working in the specialties of clinical oncology and clinical radiology. It recognises the importance of revalidation as a way to ensure quality in clinical oncology and clinical radiology, and to reassure patients and the public that doctors are periodically reassessed regarding their fitness to practice.

We particularly applaud the recommendation to reduce the administrative burden on doctors undergoing revalidation, by the development of better IT systems and removal of many unnecessary requirements imposed by some employers greater than those mandated by the GMC, which are irrelevant to the sphere of clinical practice of our members and Fellows.

Initial findings from a recent RCR survey[1] of clinical radiologists aged 55 and over, and working in the UK, found that half or more would potentially delay their retirement date if there were a slimmed down, targeted approach to appraisal and revalidation.  It serves no-one well, especially patients, that highly experienced doctors are retiring early as a result of the demands of meeting inappropriate requirements of appraisal and revalidation.

Revalidation is a dynamic process, and we await the publication of on-going research to determine whether appraisal and revalidation have any positive impact and value, and are pleased that the results of any changes brought about as a result of Sir Keith’s report will be carefully monitored.

The RCR looks forward to working with its Fellows and members in conjunction with the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, the GMC and other stakeholders to take forward Sir Keith’s recommendations.


Mark Covey, External Engagement Team, / 07554 998193.

[1] “Barriers to Continued Working” survey [due for publication in March 2017]