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Guidance for medical professionals

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) helps doctors to maintain and improve their performance. It is a continuing process, outside formal undergraduate and postgraduate training, that enables individual doctors to maintain and improve standards of medical practice. As part of the annual appraisal and revalidation process, all doctors who have a licence to practise will be required to provide documentation that they are participating in CPD in order to keep up to date and fit to practise.

FMLM is responsible for the quality assurance and awarding of CPD credits to learning activities in medical leadership and management that meet the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges’ guidance for CPD. Doctors are responsible for identifying and planning their individual CPD activity and should take into account the full scope of practice in which they work. These should be considered and agreed with the doctors’ appraiser as part of their personal development plan. The CPD credits will be mapped to the FMLM Leadership and Management Standards for Medical Professionals (2nd Edition) four domains (self, team, organisation, system) to help understand the doctors’ current and future professional development requirements.

What is CPD in Medical Leadership and Management?

FMLM has developed the scheme that underpins CPD in medical leadership and management by accrediting activities that should be appropriately recognised as part of the individual’s CPD. This will be achieved by the award of FMLM CPD credits that acknowledge the development of the skills, competencies and behaviours required for leadership and management.

What activities are suitable for CPD credits?

A wide range of activities are suitable for CPD credits and can be varied across your scope of practice. They are divided into:

  1. Local (internal activities within employing organisations)
  2. National/Regional (awarded formal CPD credits)
  3. Personal – Educational activities not formally awarded CPD credits but determined to be a useful development activity

The focus for the CPD scheme hosted by FMLM is the development required in leadership and management and a list of examples can be found here.

What are the minimum requirements?

The proportion of credits attributable to leadership and management should reflect the balance of work performed in these roles. Doctors with clinical responsibility are expected to fulfil CPD that reflects the proportion of clinical and leadership responsibilities they undertake. A clinician in a full-time leadership role would be expected to achieve the minimum of 50 CPD credits every year. You should have a balance of activities between the categories outlined below and the educational activity must be accompanied by reflection on the learning event to consider your learning, impact it will have on your work and further learning needs.

  • Local - 20 credits
  • National/International - 20 credits
  • Personal - 10 credits

A single long-term study programme cannot however account for more than 25 credits out of the total minimum CPD requirements. Clinicians with ongoing clinical commitments should have that represented as a proportion of CPD achieved across their scope of practice.

The balance between categories outlined above are minimum recommendations, although there is scope for variation should the educational value of the activities meet the personal development plan of the doctor. Clinicians in leadership roles are expected to attend ‘Leaders in Healthcare’ conference at least once every 5 years.

What if the activity does not have formal CPD credits?

Not all activities will attract formal CPD credits but you may still deem them a valuable development activity. In this case you can assign ‘personal’ credits where 1 CPD point is the equivalent of one hour of educational activity that may reinforce existing good practice or provide new knowledge. Individuals have responsibility to record CPD that has educational value and aligns to the areas of development according to the FMLM leadership and management standards. This must be accompanied by recorded personal reflection. 

How do I record my CPD credits?

CPD activities can be recorded with digital CPD diaries provided by royal colleges or third party providers. The log should include details of the activity (including the CPD reference code), evidence of participation (desirable) and personal reflection. FMLM will launch a digital CPD diary later in 2020, which will be tailored to development in leadership and management and allows mapping of development to the FMLM leadership and management standards.

Full guidance is available to download on this page in the 'Download menu'.

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