Revalidation and Appraisal

Preparing for your revalidation or annual appraisal can seem daunting, but with Athona’s dedicated teams support and guidance the entire process will be straightforward and easy to manage.

Since revalidations were introduced in 2012, we’ve successfully revalidated 531 doctors* and every year we assist with over 500 appraisals. Better still, according to the GMC’s Revalidation Data Explorer our results show we not only have the highest revalidation percentage, but also the lowest deferral rate of all leading agencies. To see how we compare, simply check out the Data Explorer and filter by ‘Designated body type’ to ‘Locum Agency.’

If you’re a doctor or nurse, take a look below at how Athona can support you with annual appraisals and revalidation.

*Information correct as of September 2020.

Meet the Team

Tracie Spires – Associate Director of Quality & Insourcing
01277 255617

Casey Murrell – Appraisal & Revalidation Support Officer
01277 255621

Chloe Szczygiel – Appraisal & Revalidation Support Officer
01277 255624

Revalidation for Doctors

Revalidation is the process by which licensed doctors demonstrate to the General Medical Council (GMC), on a five year cycle, that they’re fit to practise as a medical practitioner. They do this by keeping up-to-date within their field of medical knowledge, attending annual appraisals, engaging in regular Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and complying with their employer’s requirements. It is a mandatory process designed to protect both patients and doctors.

You will need to begin working with Athona to connect to us for the purposes of revalidation. When you next log on to your GMC account simply update or select your Designated Body connection to Athona or email us at and we can connect you.

Over the five years of your revalidation cycle you will need to prepare for, and participate in, an annual appraisal, uploading evidence of CPD and quality improvement activity.  At least once in your five-year revalidation cycle you will need to conduct a 360 Multisource Feedback exercise, this is something we can assist you with when reporting on feedback from colleagues and patients.

The GMC will contact you and your Responsible Officer (RO) four months before your revalidation is due – Athona’s RO is the highly respected and influential Professor Fahed Youssef MD FRCS.  Our revalidation and appraisal support team will work with you to collate and prepare your revalidation portfolio of evidence and submit this to Professor Youssef to review and make a recommendation on your behalf to the GMC.

Annual Appraisal for Doctors

The most important element of your five-year revalidation cycle is preparing for and attending your annual medical appraisal when it’s due. Many think this ongoing evaluation process will be daunting – but with our help, your appraisals will remain straightforward and easy to manage and your portfolio for revalidation evidence will come together on schedule.  It’s all about preparation!

At Athona we also offer competitively priced appraisals and offer a discount scheme when you work over 975 hours a year through Athona. Unlike other appraisal providers, we do not charge for the revalidation recommendation or access and support from our Responsible Officer, he is there for you whenever you need advice or support.

Simple steps to be ready for your appraisal

Do not delay: Book and participate in your annual appraisal meeting by the agreed date to keep your five-year revalidation cycle on track, do not risk a deferral of a revalidation recommendation by falling out of sync with your appraisal cycle.

Appraisal input: Our easy online PrepIT system simplifies the information that is needed before the appraisal meeting. We recommend sending CPD evidence and reflections to our support team on a regular basis who are happy to upload this on your behalf.  If you find yourself struggling to meet your input deadline, our appraisal and revalidation support team can log in and view your progress, offering help and advice if necessary.

Scope of work: Remember to keep a list of posts and exact dates when they were undertaken since your last appraisal. Ideally update your scope of work frequently by logging in to PrepIT to update this throughout the year.

Probity: Don’t be tempted to exaggerate your achievements in regard to PDP or deliberately avoid discussing any concerns or complaints. Honesty is always the best policy and our appraisers will offer a listening ear and supportive guidance if and when needed.

Punctuality: Your face-to-face or Skype appraisal meeting may last a couple of hours, so do come prepared. If face to face, please arrive early to find the meeting location or if online, please log on early to run any updates and make sure you have a good connection speed.

To prepare for your annual appraisal, there are a number of supporting documents that need to be incorporated. Please see the list below but do call us if you need any guidance or support with uploading your evidence.

Scope of Work – Add a list of posts and the exact dates they were undertaken since your last appraisal, also include any private work you have done in the past year.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) – Record all CPD activities, including certificates and proof of attendance, you may also list books, publications read and websites visited.

Personal Development Plan (PDP) – Did you achieve last year’s PDP? If not, why and what are your plans to achieve it in the PDP you intend to set with your appraiser this year? If your plans have changed that’s ok, just document what you plan to do instead.

Quality improvement activity – Include any audits or case-based discussion, peer-group discussions and your reflections on how this will improve your practice going forward.

Multisource Feedback – At least once in your five year revalidation cycle you need to conduct a 360 Multisource Feedback exercise. We can assist you with reporting on feedback from colleagues and patients, our PrepIT system has a colleague feedback element or you may use external 360MSF i.e. RcPsych APC360 or Edgecombe.

Significant events – Please declare any significant event you have witnessed or been involved with. Provide a statement with reflections for discussion.

Complaints – Be open and honest even about minor complaints and provide reflections for discussion.

Compliments – Retain and comment on any thank you cards, email and letters from patients, patient representatives and colleagues; always remembering to maintain patient confidentiality by redacting any patient identifying details.

Professional Indemnity and Health Declarations – As part of your annual appraisal you will need to confirm that you have adequate indemnity provision and that any health conditions do not impact on your ability to practice.

As a general reminder, if you do have any health conditions that you need support with please do get in touch with us. We do more than just appraisal and revalidation, we are here to offer support and guidance to ensure you can remain in practice with the right adjustments and support.

Not connected to a designated body or suitable person? A number of years ago we identified that there is a disconnect and a lack of support for doctors without a prescribed connection or access to a suitable person. This could be due to a career break, being based overseas or working for a Trust bank where you are unsure as to who supports with appraisals to keep your licence.

We have been supporting a large group of doctors for many years and welcome new enquiries to arrange and conduct a GMC Annual Return ready appraisal with full GMC Rev 12 support.

If you’re not getting the support or advice you need from your current designated body, please get in touch with our Revalidation & Appraisal support team. We have supported many doctors by listening to their concerns and giving clarity and context around the appraisal and revalidation process, enabling you to have a positive appraisal and revalidation experience.

Complete this short form to get in touch with our Revalidation & Appraisal support team and find out how we can support you.

Revalidation for Nurses

Since its introduction in April 2016, revalidation for nurses has provided assurance to the public of a nurse’s continued competence, as well as to encourage ongoing training and development.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) will notify you 60 days before your revalidation application is due – although the process of collecting feedback, engaging in CPD and personal reflection should be thought of as an ongoing exercise.

Here at Athona we’ll guide you through the entire process and support you with completing your revalidation evidence using the NMC forms. All nurses working for Athona can benefit from a combined discussion discount by arranging their reflective and confirmation discussions in one session, this can be completed face-to-face or via Skype.

Get in touch with the team today to find out how we can help with submission of hours, arrangement of reflective and confirmation discussions.