Last year, the GDC introduced enhanced CPD so that we can get the maximum benefit from our training and CPD activities.
We had our core topics which we needed to complete. These kept us up to date with Safeguarding, Medical Emergencies and Cross Infection just to name a few, and these did benefit us and our patients.
But there has been a change…
The GDC have now stated that they want our CPD to be meaningful to our individual role as a Dental Care Professional. In order to do this well, we should have a Personal Development Plan (PDP). OK, this seems fair enough right?
In simple terms if you’re a Dental Nurse working in a practice with a Head Dental Nurse and a Practice Manager, is a CPD course on Team Management relevant to your specific role and PDP? No, of course not.
So, what is relevant to your specific role and PDP?
A Dental Nurse wishing to progress their career may look into post graduate qualifications, which will benefit them in their field of practice. Whilst working in an implant centre, your PDP could consist of a post registration qualification in Implant Nursing and CPD courses in Treatment Coordination and Clinical Photography (all courses which Cavity Dental Training offer 😉).
A post registration qualification in Radiography will always be an adventurous qualification to hold in any practice!
The new scheme must benefit Dental Nurses. We have our individual and specific goals that we want to achieve. This PDP must be personal to ourselves and relevant to what we want to achieve as an individual Dental Care Professional.
This PDP will identify our needs of progression and will clearly show how we plan on progressing our career with our choice of training and CPD activities. The GDC have highly recommended some topics which will relate to your field of practice whatever your working environment, such as Radiography, Legal & Ethical Issues and Oral Cancer. Familiar topics? These were our core topics. These are still recommended as keeping up to date with as they contribute towards patient safety.
So, going back to our PDP, we need to state; what our field of practice is, what we want to achieve in the next five years and how we plan on achieving this.
We need to include a self-reflection after our CPD activity as this will help determine whether this was the best activity to participate in or if we need further knowledge and understanding in certain topics.
We must also remember to relate our CPD activity to one of the four GDC outcomes. A lot of information went out last year and it all did become quite blurry, so for those who can’t remember the outcomes they are:
- Effective communication with patients and dental team
- Effective self-management and leadership
- Maintenance and development of knowledge
- Maintenance of skills and behaviour.
Your training and CPD activities will relate to one of the above outcomes and will help you achieve your five-year goal.
Just remember to keep logging your hours annually, even if your hours are zero, and to log at least ten hours every two years. And whatever you do, DO NOT throw away any evidence of your CPD.
There are huge benefits to Dental Nurses in practice and even Locum Nurses.
Enhanced CPD is forcing us to reflect and think about where we want to be in the next five years. It’s an easy way for us to plan and action our goals. It’s a way for us to identify areas where we need to improve and areas where we can now progress from.
It may be disguised as more paperwork but what a fab motivational tool the GDC has given us!