Your College, Governed Effectively

Traffic Medicine.

We are changing for the better

We are introducing a new corporate governance structure so that we can operate more effectively and provide a better service for our members.

This will lead to a series of major changes to reporting relationships and committees across the College, its Faculties and Institute.

This change programme, which will take three years to implement, will make RCPI a more effective, member-focused organisation with a renewed emphasis on our mission to train, educate and continuously develop doctors for current and future world health needs.

What will this look like?

We will have enhanced financial, audit and risk management controls, more effective board and committee structures, and a revitalised focus on the needs of our Trainees, Members, Licentiates and Fellows.

Specific outcomes to expect include:

  • A new Institute of Medicine as a training and professional body for Internal Medicine
  • A new Executive Board that will include strong faculty representation
  • A more efficient College Council with a refreshed focus on standards and values
  • Cleaner, leaner lines of reporting across all committees and faculty boards
  • Clearer roles and responsibilities for everyone involved in our operations, including Trainers, examiners, Deans, Council and RCPI staff
  • An induction process and better supports for Trainers and other clinicians who deliver postgraduate education and training
  • A more visible, active presence on training sites across Ireland so that we can provide a better, more accessible and supportive service to Trainers and Trainees

Why are we changing our governance structure?

Governance is the process of decision making. We need to make sure we have the right people making the right decisions.

RCPI has been in operation for over 350 years, and during that time it has grown significantly in size and scope, particularly in the last ten years. The gradual, incremental expansion of the College has resulted in a number of issues such as fragmented services and committees with overlapping remits.

We need to change in order to be the best possible college we can be. After a process of internal reflection and review, which included advice from an external agency, we have commenced the process of overhauling our governance structure to deliver the standard of service our members deserve and ensure all of our activities and committees are aligned with our mission.

Five key work streams

The three-year change programme will involve five key work streams:

1. Governance Improvements

This will include

  • A review and restructure of the College Council
  • Establishing an Executive Board to include representation from all Faculty/Institute Deans
  • Establishing the Institute of Medicine as a training and professional body for Medicine

2. Committee reorganisation

New committees will be established to oversee areas that currently lack official oversight, including audit and governance.

Current committees will be reviewed and reformed to optimise clinicians’ time and ensure clear reporting relationships.

3. Clinical Framework

We will examine clinical roles and responsibilities across RCPI, including appointment processes. We will also ensure there is effective training and induction for all clinicians who take up roles within RCPI.

4. Operating Model

We will change the way we work internally in order to deliver a better service to Trainees, Members and Fellows, particularly in relation to postgraduate specialist training and professional issues.

5. Training Site Presence

It is important for our Trainees, Trainers, Members and Fellows to have easy access to RCPI so that we can support their training and professional development.

We are committed to increasing our physical presence on-the-ground at our training sites. We already have an office in Cork and Galway and will be opening offices in other training sites across Ireland in the months ahead.


Progress to date

The Governance Oversight Group held its first meeting on 8 December 2017 and agreed to prioritise training matters across each of the five workstreams in early 2018.

This will include looking at

  • All of our training-related committees and clinical roles across the College
  • Commencing work on recruitment for the future lead clinician of the Institute of Medicine
  • Changing our administrative structures to ensure that support for each training body is centralised
  • Looking at what support is required for our trainees and trainers on site.

This is only the beginning and we aim to look at all Governance Improvements within our examinations structure towards the middle of 2018.

Your input is crucial

All of the work carried out will involve input from Trainees, Members, Licentiates and Fellows, to ensure your needs are being met.

Updates will be regularly communicated on the progress of the programme.

Your feedback throughout the process is more than welcome.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions on the Governance Implementation Programme. 

Contact us

Emma Cuddihy

Programme Manager, Governance Implementation Programme

Tel: 01 863 9730