Editorials

Revalidation is the answer

BMJ 1999; 319 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.319.7218.1145 (Published 30 October 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;319:1145

To one question—but many more remain

  1. Graham Buckley, executive director
  1. Scottish Council for Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education, Edinburgh EH2 1EL

    Education and debate pp 1180 −92

    Revalidation is the current focus of attention in the unending examination of the roles, rights, and responsibilities of professions. On behalf of the public, governments may permit and sometimes encourage groups with special skills to have a monopoly in providing services. When the public is not in a good position to judge the quality of a service, the training, qualifications, and codes of ethics and behaviour of a self regulated profession have traditionally provided the desired protection. However, these structural characteristics of a profession are no longer enough to reassure a less deferential and better informed public. This is true for all professions and for all developed countries. So it is against this background that moves towards revalidation of doctors in the United Kingdom should be seen.

    Societies now expect evidence of the effectiveness of services and of the continuing competence of individual practitioners. The introduction of clinical governance within organisations and revalidation for individuals has been the first step to meeting this expectation in health care in the UK. For many doctors …

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