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The QAAS Appraisal Scheme

New to the Quality Assured Appraisal Scheme?

We provide an ISO 9001 approved appraisal scheme in order to support our doctor members in the revalidation process. Since December 2012, licensed doctors have been required to undertake regular appraisal, based on the Good Medical Practice Framework for appraisal and revalidation guidance, in order to revalidate. 

If this is your first time using SOM's appraisal scheme, please write to appraisal@som.org.uk stating your name, that it is your first time using SOM's appraisal scheme and your designated body. We will then set up your appraisal account for you so that you are able to access the appraisal application page. 

Designated Body/Responsible Officer

Doctors will have a connection to one organisation that will help them with revalidation. This organisation is called their designated body. Through a formal link with their organisation, doctors relate to a senior doctor in the organisation, known as the Responsible Officer (RO). The RO makes a recommendation about the doctor’s fitness to practise to the GMC. This evaluation of a doctor’s practice must include annual appraisals that consider the whole scope of their practice. The recommendation will be based on the outcome of the doctor’s annual appraisals over the course of five years. Following the responsible officer’s recommendation, the GMC will decide whether to renew the doctor’s licence. We are not a designated body. To find your designated body please visit the GMC website. 

Completing the appraisal documentation

Our QAAS appraisals are undertaken using 1 of 2 appraisal formats:

  1. If an appraisee has a prescribed connection with the Faculty of Occupational Medicine (FOM) and is registered with the FOM RO, he/she is required to use the online PReP platform, (based on the Revalidation Support Team (RST) MAG form), as the vehicle upon which the appraisal is carried out, except in the case of an appraisee with a disability, where other arrangements could be made. In using the PReP platform, the appraisee understands that their details will be shared with the FOM, and that the FOM RO (and named Faculty Revalidation staff who have signed declarations to confidentiality) may access appraisal information stored therein. We recommend that you register to use the platform as soon as possible. 
  2. If an appraisee is registered with another RO, he/she will use the Revalidation Support Team (RST) MAG form, a pdf document that will be sent to him/her prior to the appraisal for completion and sending to his/her appraiser.

For further understanding on the administrative processes of our Appraisal Scheme, please see the flowchart.

Appraisers

Once a doctor has been accredited by SOM as a SOM QAAS Appraiser, he/she is entitled to use the FOM platform or Revalidation Support Team (RST) MAG form to carry out appraisals of doctors and to charge the fees designated by the SOM for that appraisal service. Appraisers must have attended refresher training/training on the RST MAG form and must not wrongfully claim to be an accredited Appraiser without having attended this training.

Under the terms of the scheme, an appraiser will undertake your appraisal for the first two years. A new appraiser is assigned to undertake the third, fourth and fifth appraisals in the five-year cycle. Once you have submitted your appraisal application you will be assigned an appraiser by the SOM. You cannot choose an appraiser. If you consider there to be a conflict of interest with the chosen appraiser please advise us.

The appraisal meeting will take place approximately six weeks from receipt of your application. This is due to other work commitments of our appraisers. Your appraiser will advise you of the next available date they are able to offer, once we have confirmed your participation in the appraisal scheme.

Further Information

For further information on appraisal and revalidation we recommend you look at the GMC website and the NHS England website.

FAQs

Q When should I apply for an appraisal?

A Doctors must apply annually for an appraisal. Please allow sufficient time when applying as it may be six weeks before the appraisal meeting can take place dependent on the appraiser's schedule.

Q My SOM membership has expired, can I still apply for an appraisal?

A Before applying for appraisal, you need to renew your membership.

Q How is the appraisal completed?

A The appraisal is completed both online and through a meeting with your Appraiser as follows:

  • Appraisees apply online by clicking on the' Appraisal Application' button within the members area
  • You will proceed to pay for your appraisal
  • On receipt of payment, you and your Appraiser are sent a commencement letter with the information to proceed
  • Your Appraiser contacts you to arrange a convenient face-to-face meeting

Q I don’t know the name of my Responsible Officer (RO), is this important?

A The name of your RO determines your appraisal process:

  • Doctors registered with the FOM, whose RO is David Fox, use the FOM PReP platform and complete the appraisal online.
  • Doctors with an external RO use the Revalidation Support Team (RST) MAG form, a pdf document sent in advance for them to complete and forward to their Appraisers.

For revalidation you need a prescribed connection to a designated body with a RO. Your RO will make a recommendation to the GMC regarding your fitness to practise. Please visit the GMC website find your designated body and RO.

Q I’m not very computer literate, is technical help available?

A For FOM PReP users: 

  • For Technical help available and a learning module to help you log into the system click here
  • Your username for the FOM PReP platform is your GMC number
  • If you have difficulty or have forgotten your password, please contact admin@fom.ac.uk for assistance

A For MAG users: please contact appraisal@som.org.uk for assistance.

Q What are the fees and how can I pay?

A The cost for an appraisal is £695. The fastest payment method is by credit card via the online payment link that you are presented upon your appraisal application. We offer various payment methods but cannot accept American Express or standing orders for appraisals.

Q Can I choose the date of my appraisal or will the SOM arrange this?

A You can arrange the appraisal date with your Appraiser, normally one year after your last QAAS appraisal. Although we cannot arrange this date, we will notify your Appraiser to contact you as soon as payment is confirmed.

Q Can I contact my Appraiser, what happens if I don’t hear from them?

A The normal procedure is to wait for your Appraiser to contact you which they will do within an appropriate timescale. Once you receive your commencement letter, you can start your preparation.

Q Where are appraisals held?

A At a venue agreed by the Appraiser and Appraisee.

Q My work is based outside the UK how is my appraisal arranged?

A The recommended practice for international members is to have one face-to-face appraisal out of every three. It’s usual to do the face-to-face first and then use Skype for the next two years.

Q Why can’t I choose my Appraiser?

A It is part of the quality assurance process that the SOM QAAS administration assigns an Appraiser to you. As far as possible, Appraisers are assigned according to qualification, location and availability. All Appraisers are trained and assessed to ensure they meet the required standard to undertake appraisals.

Q Will I get the same Appraiser every year?

A The 5 year cycle normally requires that you have the same Appraiser for the first 2 years and a different appraiser for the next 3 years.

Q I recently had an appraisal organised by my employers. Can I wait another year before having the SOM QAAS Appraisal?

A Your medical appraisal may not be to the required standard for revalidation. Please contact your designated body to discuss whether you need to arrange another appraisal.

Q Any other questions?

For queries relating to revalidation, please contact your designated body or RO. You can also contact the GMC at revalidation-support@gmc-uk.org For administration queries, please contact appraisal@som.org.uk.