Based on what we've learned from providing support to doctors since 2011, we know that maintaining a good record of Professional Competence activities comes down to organising your information.
Our Getting Started guide will help you with the basic requirements.
If you have recently enrolled on a Professional Competence Scheme, or haven't had an opportunity to bring your record up to date for a while, below are six tips to help you get started.
Professional Competence requires that you conduct at least one Audit or Quality Improvement project every year.
It is important to remember that Clinical (Practice) Audit is not the same as CPD - it is a separate Professional Competence requirement. To meet this requirement, you must complete one audit or quality improvement project about an aspect of your own practice every year. This Medical Council requirement is not limited to doctors working in a hospital setting.
It is recommended that you spend at least 12 hours per year on your audit or quality improvement project.
The Medical Council’s eight Domains of Good Professional Practice set out the principles on which good practice is founded.
Together, these principles describe medical professionalism in action.
Doctors are best placed to choose the activities that reflect their educational needs and will be expected to make a judgement on the value of a particular activity based on their scope of practice. They are expected to map their activities against the relevant Domain of Good Professional Practice and ensure that the activities undertaken during the course of a five year cycle encompasses all eight domains.
We recommend that you aim to assign all eight domains every year. When recording your activities in ePortfolio for Professional Competence, you have the option to assign up to three domains at a time.
The Professional Competence year runs between 1 May and 30 April every year.
To facilitate doctors who attend activities in the last few days before 30 April, we always allow a short "grace period" after 30 April to give time for last-minute activities to be recorded before ePortfolio is closed to generate Annual Statements of Participation.
It's all too easy to leave adding information and documents to your ePortfolio to the last minute. To make sure that we have time to help you with any potential problems before the Professional Competence year end, please try to record your CPD and audit claims regularly, and contact us straight away if you need help.
If you have difficulty in assigning categories to your Professional Competence activities or have any questions relating to your Professional Competence Scheme, please contact the RCPI Professional Competence Department, which is open Monday to Friday 09:00 – 17:00 GMT at + 353 1 863 9739 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have forgotten your password and need help logging in to your ePortfolio, please contact the RCPI Helpdesk, which is open Monday to Friday 09:00 – 17:00 GMT on Free phone 1800 303 574 (ROI only) or +353 1 863 9721 or email@example.com
As you know, all doctors on the Specialist, General or Supervised Division of the Medical Council Register are required by law to be enrolled on a Professional Competence Scheme and record sufficient CPD and Clinical (Practice) Audit claims to meet their scheme requirements.
The Medical Council requires all doctors to pay their Professional Competence renewal fee before renewing their Medical Council Registration. They must enter the name of their Professional Competence Scheme and the date they paid their renewal fee on their Annual Retention form.
If you hold Supervised, General or Specialist registration with the Irish Medical Council, absence from practice does not in itself exempt you from engagement with Professional Competence, so it is important that you renew your enrolment every year.
If you have moved overseas it is important to be aware of the Irish Medical Council advice on this topic.
To change your Professional Competence Scheme status, we need your written instructions. If your Medical Council registration status has changed (e.g. you have changed your Medical Council registration type, retired from the Medical Council Register, entered a training programme or moved abroad), please let us know immediately by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to:
Professional Competence Department
Royal College of Physicians of Ireland
19 South Frederick Street
Visit: Renew your enrolment
The Medical Council has changed Professional Competence requirements for the 2020-2021 year. You can read the full announcement from the Medical Council here (PDF)
The Medical Council has stated that for the 2020-2021 Professional Competence year, the following will apply:
The requirements outlined above will be kept under review in light of a protracted pandemic and the Medical Council will keep the COVID-19 section of their website updated with the latest information
Instructional videos for getting off to a good start
You may want to watch the following video tutorials.
You may prefer to download a pdf to read:
Safe Start was developed by the Medical Council of Ireland to help doctors who are new to Ireland.
It will help you understand the general requirements when practising here and how to deal with common clinical scenarios.
The Medical Council of Ireland provides extensive information about Professional Competence.
We have a highly experienced Professional Competence support team in our Dublin headquarters. They are always happy to answer your questions and advise you on how to maintain Professional Competence. Please note, at present the fastest way to contact this department is by logging in to our support desk here