To hold a GMC licence to practice in the UK, every doctor is required to be revalidated every five years.

Revalidation is the process by which all licensed doctors are required to demonstrate on a regular basis that they are up to date and fit to practice in their chosen field and able to provide quality of care. This means that holding a license to practice is becoming an indicator that the doctor continues to meet the professional standards set by the GMC and the specialist’s standard set by the medical.

Essential eligibility requirements for domestic and overseas candidates who want to work in UK institutions will be dependent on a standard medical assessment. Specific criteria will depend upon institution but may include:

  • References
  • Right to work in UK
  • IELTS (non-EU only)
  • PLAB (non-EU only)


Total Assist is here to help you with all your revalidation needs. Offering you 24/7 support and guidance on why revalidation is important to you, the criteria for revalidation as well as helping doctors who do not have a designated body.

We understand the importance of being revalidation ready, for more information and guidance please see the useful link below.

GMC website

Doctor revalidation icon


At Total Assist we know that sorting out your appraisal and revalidation can be a bit of a headache, so check out these frequently asked questions.

Revalidation is a 5-year cycle and the end result of the appraisal process. The Responsible Officer of your Designated Body (Total Assist Recruitment Ltd) will make a judgement on your fitness to practice based on your previous appraisal outcomes and progression against your PDP. The end result is a positive revalidation, a deferral, or non-engagement. All doctors are expected to participate in the yearly appraisal process and provide evidence of such (by way of appraisal outcome) to their Responsible Officer.

You can defer your revalidation once and up to 12 months only, using one specific reason. If you do not complete your revalidation after this time frame, then this will imply non-engagement and you will be reported to the GMC.

The appraisal is a process whereby a 1-1 meeting (face to face or via Skype) is held with a trained appraiser. The appraisal process is confidential and constitutes a discussion with reflection on your previous 12 months practise, the opportunity to review the supporting evidence presented and the opportunity to discuss and agree a personal development plan (PDP) for the forthcoming 12 months. As a doctor, through this process, you must provide supporting evidence and reflection that demonstrates you are meeting the domains of Good Medical Practice.

An appraisal is not:

  • An interview
  • A pass or fail exercise
  • A judgmental process

A designated body is an agency that is responsible for providing you with a Responsible Officer and access to appraisal services. Total Assist Recruitment Ltd work closely with Healthcare Licensing Support Ltd who have a professional team on hand for advice and support including 26 trained Consultant appraisers in order to provide this resource to their doctors who have prescribed connection.

You will have a prescribed connection to an agency (Designed Body) who you do the majority of your work for.

No need to submit an annual return to the GMC (any doctor without a prescribed connection to a designated body will be required to submit an annual return to the GMC) at a cost of £250

  • Access to a Responsible Officer to support you through revalidation
  • Kudos of working for a designated body
  • Free CPD points
  • Access to Healthcare Licensing Support Ltd for appraisal support and guidance and assistance with annual appraisals.
  • The annual appraisal will cost from £250 plus VAT, while revalidation is £500 plus VAT.

A personal development plan should consist of roughly three to six items that aim towards accepted standards. You should ensure that your plan is specific and measurable; using numbers, dates and times to represent clear objectives. You should also make sure that your objectives are achievable and that you have the correct resources to hand. You will also need to set a deadline for completing your goals – make sure that this is realistic and that you can deliver.

  • Any previous signed off appraisal
  • 360 degree feedback from within the past year
  • Notes, letters, affidavits, references and feedback
  • Certificates, CPD printouts, attendance forms
  • Reflective writing (especially when related to events)
  • Clinical letters, notes and entries (anonymised)
  • Make sure that all information is named, dated, relevant and contribute to your appraisal and revalidation portfolio.
  • Evidence of all professional roles whether they have been paid or not
  • Evidence of statements of achievements
  • Evidence of your personal development plan where necessary
  • Evidence of feedback with reflection

Total Assist can offer you a complete package of services to ensure that you have everything you need to work as a locum doctor.

  • Online training (link to training page)
  • Full documentation explaining the appraisal and revalidation processes
  • Read ‘Good Medical Practice Framework’ from the GMC Link?
  • Identify your Responsible Officer
  • Assemble a portfolio based on MAG with evidence
  • Reflect on your achievements
  • Reflect on all your needs, especially on feedback
  • Demonstrate a full engagement with the process
  • Build annually on previous appraisals
  • Review your portfolio, with recommendations from your Responsible Officer
  • Create a list of questions or issues to consider at your appraisal
  • Prepare suggestions for PDP
  • Look for evidence of reflection and engagement
  • Discuss your portfolio to help you create a PDP
  • Sign off your appraisal if satisfied with all the information
  • Refer to your Responsible Officer if there are any concerns

Once you have collected all of the relevant documentation, your appraisal will take 90 minutes. Although your appraisal can be done face to face, we also have the option of doing it over Skype which is ideal for making the process even quicker and simpler for you, especially if you happen to live further afield.

All of the courses we provide offer CPD points, so they are a fantastic way to collect the points easily and quickly. To find our more information visit our Training Page

You will be expected to complete a minimum of 50 hours of CPD each year and at least 250 hours during a revalidation cycle, although some specialties will easily exceed these figures. Make sure that you choose activities that are genuinely developmental and not just for the sake of it – try and relate your learning to support current skills / knowledge or work on career development. A balance is also beneficial, so aim for a mix of clinical, academic and professional activities, spending no more than 20 hours of CPD on a single type of activity. Recording of CPD activity should include a reflection of the learning gained from each activity and the likely effect on your professional work.

Register with us today to enjoy our full range of services.

Mandatory Training

Total Assist can offer you all of your mandatory training for free. As soon as you join us we will ensure that your online training is completed so you can be ready for your first locum shift. Not only do we provide all mandatory training as part of our service, we can also help you to gain CPD points which count towards your appraisal and revalidation.