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CPD FAQs: non-RCOG members and non-UK participants

This page provides answers to CPD FAQs from non-RCOG members and non-UK participants:

RCOG Fellows and Members practising outside the UK

I practise outside the UK but wish to revalidate in the UK. Do I need to participate in CPD?

Doctors have the responsibility, wherever they practise, always to remain competent and therefore up to date. If you wish to revalidate in the UK, it’s your responsibility to do enough appropriate CPD to remain up to date and fit to practise in your work and to be able to demonstrate this at your appraisal. This applies whether you are in full-time or less than full-time practice.

You’ll need to demonstrate that you’re following the standards set for obstetricians and gynaecologists within your area of practice and you should be able to take appropriate evidence to your appraisal as required.

Doctors based outside the UK won’t have a relationship with a UK-based organisation that has the status of a designated body for revalidation. The General Medical Council (GMC) advises that the revalidation options for any doctors without a prescribed connection to a designated body (and therefore no Responsible Officer) are the same, regardless of where the doctor practises:

  • They should consider whether they really need their licence, and if not, voluntarily surrender it
  • If they want to revalidate to retain their licence, they need to find a suitable person, whom the GMC has approved, to oversee their revalidation and make a recommendation about them

If you can’t identify a suitable person, you’ll need to provide the GMC with evidence. Read the GMC’s guidance on collecting evidence for revalidation.

If you plan to work in the UK, you’ll need to identify your designated body and make contact with your appraiser lead for advice.

How can I meet the credit requirements of the RCOG’s CPD programme as an overseas doctor?

The College acknowledges that if you do not practise in the UK, you may find it difficult to satisfy some of the requirements of the RCOG’s CPD programme. For this reason, the College will be flexible.

For example, CPD participants are required to attend a mandatory meeting during the 5-year cycle, but most mandatory meetings are held in the UK. If you’re unable to attend a mandatory meeting, we recommend that you select a scientific meeting or conference in your own country that directly relates to your area of practice. You’ll need to gain agreement in advance from the CPD Office that the planned alternative meeting can be considered as your mandatory meeting; please email us with information about the meeting and your scope of work (i.e. a full description of your area of practice).

Non-members of the RCOG

I’m not a member of the RCOG, but I practise in O&G (or one of its subspecialties) in the UK. Can I participate in CPD with the RCOG?

Yes. All doctors need to demonstrate that they’re practising to the appropriate standards in the specialty in which they’re working, and that they’re participating in appropriate CPD activities. The College recommends that obstetricians and gynaecologists in non-training posts participate in the RCOG’s CPD programme, or another professional body’s CPD programme if it’s more relevant to their practice.

Non-members of the RCOG who wish to participate in the RCOG’s CPD programme need to register as a CPD Associate. For details of the benefits, and the annual fee, please visit the CPD registration page.

I’m not a member of the RCOG. I only carry out termination of pregnancy (TOP) and consultation for TOP. Do I need to participate in the RCOG’s CPD programme?

You should discuss this with your appraiser. All doctors in non-training posts have to participate in appropriate CPD activities. The College recommends that you participate in the RCOG’s CPD programme, unless you consider another professional body’s CPD programme to be more relevant to your practice. For example, if your main post is as a GP, you’ll presumably be registered on the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) CPD programme; however, you’ll also need to demonstrate that you’re following the standards set within your area of practice and take appropriate evidence to your appraisal as required. If you participate in the RCOG’s programme, you’ll be required to fulfil all of the requirements, irrespective of the amount of clinical practice you carry out.

Non-members of the RCOG who wish to participate in the RCOG’s CPD programme need to register as a CPD Associate. For details of the benefits, and the annual fee, please visit the CPD registration page.

Find out more

This section of the site also includes answers to CPD FAQs about:

  • Scope of work, including
    • Doctors in training posts

    • Doctors in managerial and non-clinical roles

    • Doctors practising part-time, in limited/specialist roles and in general practice

    • Staff and associate specialist (SAS) doctors, trust doctors and similar posts
    • Doctors working in the independent sector
  • Special circumstances, including:

    • Doctors excluded from work

    • Breaks in service, e.g. sick leave or maternity leave
    • Return from work
Retired doctors
  • CPD categories and activities, including:
    • Impact of CPD
    • Knowledge-based assessment via The Obstetrician & Gynaecologist (TOG)

    • Audit

    • Analysis of significant clinical events

    • CPD allowance for examining and writing exam questions

    • Meetings and events

    • Maximum allowance of 25 CPD credits per type of activity
    • Difficulty meeting the RCOG’s CPD credit requirements
    • Evidence of CPD activities

Contact us

If you can’t find the answer to your question, or need more information, please email the CPD Office or call +44 20 7772 6307.

Elsewhere on the site

CPD guide
Read an introduction to our CPD programme, and an overview of what's involved
CPD programme
Find out more detail about the RCOG’s CPD programme