Intended for healthcare professionals


From CME to CPD: getting better at getting better?

BMJ 2000; 320 doi: (Published 12 February 2000) Cite this as: BMJ 2000;320:393

Individual learning portfolios may bridge gap between learning and accountability

  1. Clair du Boulay, director continuing professional development, Royal College of Pathologists (
  1. Department of Pathology, Southampton General Hospital, Southampton SO16 6YD

    See also p 432

    Continuing medical education is part of the process of lifelong learning that all doctors undertake from medical school until retirement and has traditionally been viewed by the medical profession in terms of updating their knowledge. However, all career grade doctors need skills that extend beyond updating their medical knowledge in order to practise effectively in the modern NHS. Such skills include management, education and training, information technology, audit, communication, and team building. These broader skills are embraced by continuing professional development, which, in a welcome move last year, was endorsed by the Academy of Royal Colleges. Thus the colleges have now accepted responsibility for both continuing medical education and professional development of hospital doctors (with parallel arrangements for general practitioners1). The task is now to establish schemes and develop methods that both achieve the desired outcomes and are seen to do so.

    The royal colleges are responsible for providing a framework for continuing professional development; setting educational standards; and monitoring, facilitating, and evaluating activities for their members. Their …

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