November 2016

  • What is the ARCP panel? 

The Annual Review of Competence Progression panel seeks to confirm that all GPSTs undertaking specialist training are progressing satisfactorily: specifically, that trainees are developing the expected competencies and skills at the expected rate and that the required evidence to support progression is present.

  • When are panels held? 

A review needs to take place at least every 12 months.  Dates for Less than Full time (LTFT) trainees and those out of synch due to prolonged leave may vary but will still be at least every 12 months.  The final review is usually held 4-6 weeks before the end of training to allow time for application for a certificate of Completion of training (CCT).

  • How will I known when my review will be? 

Dates of the main ARCP panels.  All trainees, including LTFT trainees or those with end dates other than the beginning of August will be reminded by the deanery with at least six weeks notice. If you are unsure when your next ARCP will be, contact the GP Support Manager.

  • What evidence is required for a panel review?  

Use this ESR/ARCP checklist (download form)to help you. 
The following evidence is compulsory:
 - Completion of the minimum number of WPBAs
 - Self assessment by GPST of achievement of competencies
 - Rating by Educational Supervisor of current achievement of competencies
 - Two Educational Supervisor reports, six months apart, incorporating a judgement by the ES as to whether or not training progression is satisfactory.  
 - In addition, it will be expected to see a PDP updated within the previous 6 months, and ongoing reflective log entries.  All of this evidence should be on the ePortfolio and is examined electronically by the panel.  It will be expected to find that the assessments and log entries will be entered evenly over the training year and not bunched up just before the panel review.

  • How do I know if my ePortfolio is good enough?

A document "GPST ePortfolio Guidance for Satisfactory Progression" been produced by all GP schools across the country which outlines the expectations or ARCPs on trainees and supervisors.

  • How many log entries do I need to have produced? 

The emphasis is on quality rather than quantity.  The deanery has issued guidance on the recommended minimum frequency of log entries.  It is far preferable to have a few entries demonstrating true reflective learning, rather than a larger number with no reflections.  The ES will probably find it useful if the GPST highlights before the ES review those entries that have demonstrated competencies, or particular learning points.

  • I have heard that not all the portfolios are looked at in detail. 

In Severn, for the summer panels, each portfolio is initially looked and reviewed by the local GP Training Programme Directors (TPD) at a stage 1 panel.  Those where there are concerns noted, or where the ES has requested a review, are looked at in more detail by the stage 2 panel. All the ESRs are read for a second time by the main panel -  ARCP Panel guide

  • What happens if the compulsory evidence is not present at a review? 

If the minimum evidence is not present, or competency ratings have not been done, then the panel may issue an “Outcome 5” requiring that the evidence be produced over a short defined time period, with an option of suspending or prolonging training should the evidence not be produced.  The range of outcomes are shown on the deanery website ARCP page.

  • When does a GPST and their ES have to attend a panel meeting in person? 

This is required should the panel determine that the GPSTs training is not progressing at the expected rate and/or that the training period will need to be prolonged (Outcomes 2,3,4 and sometimes 5).  The panel will then explain to the GPST what actions are required and outline the time period for review of further progress.