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Revalidation in Wales

Appraiser CPD

As with all roles a doctor undertakes, if they are an Appraiser they must undertake CPD specific to that role. The Revalidation Support Unit (RSU) provides many different opportunities for Appraiser development.

Please note, some modules referenced on this page will take you to the Y Ty Dysgu Platform where you will need to log in in order to complete. If you do not have an account, you will be able to register for one on the log in page.

GP Appraiser Regional Groups

GP Appraisers in Wales are employed by Health Education and Improvement Wales (HEIW) and are part of a wider structure to support GP appraisal. Each Appraiser is linked to a local Appraisal Co-ordinator who manages a team of Appraisers. Seven regional teams of Appraisers meet as a group once a quarter to discuss topics pertinent to the role including any new appraisal and revalidation guidance, updates to MARS or challenging scenarios they have encountered. This supportive peer group facilitates learning from each other in terms of good practice and improving skills in the role.

GP National Appraiser Conference (NAC)

All GP Appraisers meet annually at the National Appraiser Conference (NAC), usually taking place in the Summer. The day-long event enables the Appraisers to network amongst the wider group and share learning often facilitated by professional speakers. Previous topics have included Tricky Situations, The Various Discriminatory Practices inside the Healthcare Services, Motivational Interviewing and Negotiation Skills.

The agenda is compiled by two of our Appraisal Coordinators and the administrators within RSU, who consider ideas from the Appraisers and the wider office team. Invites are sent well in advance to maximise attendance and delegates are sent useful resources that were used during the event after its conclusion. On occasion, some of the information presented is adapted to produce online learning resources for our Appraisers.

Appraisal Quality Assurance (AQA)

All Appraisers are invited to take part in a national quality assurance exercise reviewing the quality of appraisal outputs (the appraisal summary).

The overall aim is to review the outputs of appraisal by assessing appraisal summaries from both primary and secondary care using a set of nationally agreed quality criteria. The aims are:

  1. To generate useful analysis to promote future action planning.
  2. To promote and ensure best practice for all delegates, thus developing their understanding of the quality of appraisal.
  3. Identify areas for further training.
  4. To share best practice between primary and secondary care
  5. To provide appraisers with the tools and knowledge to improve the way in which they conduct appraisals in the future.

The event is advertised via a MARS e-broadcast to all Appraisers.

AQA Calibration Exercise

The AQA Calibration Exercise is designed to help facilitate a consistent approach when marking anonymised appraisal summaries at the annual event. You can access the calibration resource on the link below:

AQA Calibration Resource

How to use the Calibration Resource

There are now two options when using this resource:

  1. You can watch the calibration video and the excerpts from the relevant summaries and scoring criteria.
  2. You can watch the calibration video and view the full summaries and scoring criteria.

You can do this by using the ‘Slides’ function on the bottom righthand of your screen. This will allow you to change between either option one or two based on your personal preference.

Appraisal Leads and Local Groups

All NHS Designated Bodies will have an Appraisal Lead/s who can be contacted for advice and guidance regarding appraisal and revalidation. An Appraisal Lead should sit alongside the formal clinical governance structure so that they can manage low level issues individually, but still escalate to the Deputy RO or RO if required. The role varies between areas but there are some common themes which all Appraisal Leads cover:

  • Personal experience of appraisal and the ability to provide advice and guidance.
  • Advocate for appraisal and it’s benefits.
  • Contact for a local Appraiser Group and facilitating network meetings.
  • Support with tricky scenarios that Appraisers may encounter.
  • The ability to undertake some form of quality assurance of appraisal within their organisation.

If you are unsure of who your Appraisal Lead is, you will need to contact your local appraisal and revalidation team for their details.

Many NHS Designated Bodies also have local Appraiser networks to enable sharing of good practice and discussion of difficult scenarios which may arise. These networks provide an opportunity for learning and development in the Appraiser role.

Online Learning and Tools

MARS Medical Appraisal Feedback Survey

As an Appraiser you can view anonymised feedback from the doctors you have appraised via MARS. To ensure anonymity, these are released in multiples of three. If you have completed five appraisals for example, you will only be able to view three feedback responses until you have completed a sixth appraisal.

The feedback survey will cover areas such as:

  • The appraisal
  • The administration and management of MARS
  • The Appraiser
  • The appraisal overall
  • Orbit360 (patient and colleague feedback system)

The feedback should be viewed and reflected upon as part of your whole practice appraisal every year. The feedback can be found on MARS within your Appraiser role under ‘Feedback Analytics’, simply select the live survey from the drop-down options and select the time period you wish to view.

'Bitesize CPD’ topics for Appraisers in Wales

The Revalidation Support Unit, HEIW, previously held virtual bitesize workshops on 'an Introduction to Coaching in Medical Appraisal' and 'Appraisal Rebalanced'. The online workshops provided an opportunity for Appraisers to learn new skills, refresh existing skills and to reflect on new ways of enhancing their role.  

If you have suggestions for future bitesize topics, please contact the RSU on  

Introduction to Coaching in Medical Appraisal

The ‘Introduction to Coaching in Medical Appraisal’ module focuses on coaching models, skills and alignment to appraisal, and the use of a coaching style to support the development of the Personal Development Plan (PDP). This module is available on the link below:

Introduction to Coaching in Appraisal Module

Non-Clinical CPD Modules

The Revalidation Support Unit has produced several online CPD modules which are available on our CPD website under the non-clinical section. The modules include:

  • Enhanced Appraiser Skills – This training resource has been compiled to help medical appraisers reflect on their current skills, as a reference to best practice and to encourage development in the role where needed.
  • Reflective Practice – This module can not only help to improve your own reflective skills but to also support appraisees in reflecting on their activities at appraisal in an effective way.
  • Virtual Appraisal Guidance –  this guidance is designed to guide you through best practice when undertaking appraisals on a virtual platform.

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