5 things you need to know about revalidation

Medical revalidation is the process in which the General Medical Council (GMC) confirm the continuation of a doctor’s licence to practice in the UK. Every licensed doctor who practises medicine and wishes to retain their licence to practice needs to participate in revalidation.

If you are a doctor and Pulse is your main employer and designated body, you can visit our Revalidation page for support.

Why do I have to do revalidation?

Revalidation helps keep up to the expected standard by ensuring doctors stay up to date with the latest techniques, technologies and research. Revalidation will also present the opportunity to tackle any concerns about skills such as communication and maintaining trust with patients.

Do I need to be in a permanent job to be revalidated?

No. Whether you work for an agency, fixed-term or temporary contract or a permanent role, you will need to revalidate.

How do I know who my designated body is?

It is your responsibility to inform the GMC who your main employer is. They will need to know the name of your designated body and revalidation officer. The revalidation team can provide you with all of this information if Pulse are your main employer.

How do I prepare for my revalidation?

Doctors will undergo annual appraisals with their designated bodies. The responsible officer makes a recommendation about the doctor’s fitness to practise at the GMC. This recommendation is the outcome of the doctors’ annual appraisals over the course of five years combined with the organisational clinical governance systems.

You will also be required to carry out and reflect on continuing professional development (CPD). You must carry out CPD activities every year to help you keep up to date and competent in the work you do. CPD covers the development of knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours across all areas of professional practice. Effective CPD will help you to anticipate and respond to the needs of your patients and the service, and changes in society’s expectations in the ways doctors work. It will enable you to keep up to date and fit to practise and maintain the professional standards required of you throughout your career. It can also support specific changes in your practice, which may enhance your career opportunities and enhance job satisfaction.

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When will I have to do my revalidation?

Medical revalidation will normally happen every five years and will apply to all doctors in all settings in the UK – including doctors working as locums and in the private sector. If you have any questions regarding your appraisal, revalidation or CPD activity you should contact the appraisal team within your designated body, and they will be able to support and guide you. Don’t forget to look at the GMC Revalidation Guide which provides you with key information and resources to help you carry out your responsibilities in relation to revalidation.

If you have any questions or want to know more about revalidation with Pulse, we have a dedicated Revalidation Team to support you through the process. Please get in touch and the team will be happy to help with any questions you might have.


GOV.UK. 2022. Medical revalidation of doctors to start in December. [online] Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/medical-revalidation-of-doctors-to-start-in-december [Accessed 5 January 2022].

England, N., 2022. NHS England » What is revalidation? [online] England.nhs.uk. Available at: https://www.england.nhs.uk/medical-revalidation/about-us/what-is-revalidation/ [Accessed 5 January 2022].

Gmc-uk.org. 2022. Revalidation. [online] Available at: https://www.gmc-uk.org/registration-and-licensing/managing-your-registration/revalidation#doctors-in-training [Accessed 5 January 2022].

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