In the latest of our series, Asha Fowells charts her experience of the revalidation process and planned CPD entries

This month I did what is so easy to put off: I made my first planned CPD entry.

With some trepidation, I logged on to the myGPhC portal. In itself, this felt like a small victory, with first the realisation that I could use my email and therefore didn’t need my GPhC registration number (which I always have to look up; the seven digits are still not neatly lodged in my head), and secondly taking just three attempts to get my password right.

I was also anxious at making a CPD entry. My experience with the previous Uptodate platform meant that logging CPD activities was up there with chores such as doing my tax return or weeding the garden; entirely necessary but generally requiring that bit more work than it feels it should. 

But my worries soon disappeared. From the home screen, I clicked on the (large and unmissable) revalidation box. This took me to a screen for creating, managing and submitting revalidation records, with a mere five sections: current submission (subdivided into planned and unplanned CPD), excluded entries (presumably which will become populated if I make more than the minimum number of logs and submit only a selected few), progress (detailing the time period during which I can submit my records), past submissions (of which there are none) and more information. Each section has a green information icon, which – if you so desire – gives a series of explanations as to what is expected.

Clicking on the big plus symbol next to “planned CPD” I went into a template form. Again, this was clear and simple, requiring me to insert a title for my CPD entry, then answer three questions on what I was intending to learn, how I was intending to learn it and how it would benefit the users of my service. Once more, green information icons provided more helpful details.

It was quick. It was easy. I didn’t repeat myself. It was, if not exciting, certainly refreshing. It prompted me to reflect on what I had done, why I had done it, and how it had informed the work that I do. It was just enough, but not too much. It was as it should be.

I saved my work, then went back to the home page to see that my revalidation status was now marked as “in progress” with one out of four records done. It felt good.

So now logging CPD has moved slightly up my to-do list. I don’t have a massive drive to do it in the same way that I, say, plan to see a friend for a drink or research potential purchases online (should anyone be interested, my current preoccupation is pizza ovens), but it certainly has shifted from “really painful” and into the territory of “things that are worse to think about than do and actually make me feel good when I’ve done them”. A bit like, for example, the washing up or sorting out the kids’ school uniforms. 

I may even get ahead and get all my CPD logged before I can submit my revalidation records from the beginning of September. 

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