In November 2009, the General Medical Council (GMC) issued every doctor with a licence to practise. Since December 2012 the licence to practise is subject to periodic renewal, normally every five years. Doctors must revalidate against their current clinical and/or non-clinical practice, and both the generic and specialist components of their work.

Revalidation is based on positive evidence that a doctor remains up-to-date and fit to practise against generic standards set by the GMC and specialist standards set by Colleges and Faculties and the Specialist Societies. The process centres on a revised system of annual appraisal, to which a doctor will bring a range of supporting information relating to the relevant generic and specialist standards.

For physician-specific guidance please consider our Supporting information for appraisal and revalidation: guidance for physicians. The Royal College of Physicians of London has also produced revalidation resource guides for individual physician specialties.

Processes in Scotland, England, Northern Ireland and Wales use different local appraisal systems and vary in how these are embedded in the GMC’s process for revalidation.

Clinical Practice without Revalidation

If you are intending to practise clinically in the UK, and do not have arrangements in place to undergo revalidation, you should contact the GMC as soon as possible.

For general queries on revalidation please visit our FAQs or e-mail the College’s revalidation helpdesk.