The contract for specialty doctors makes it clear that they must be both allowed and encouraged to plan their job and undertake appraisal while building a portfolio of work improving their skills and knowledge base. While developing this portfolio of experience, you will be able to participate in supporting professional activities such as:
- formal teaching
- continuing professional development
- work with a professional body (such as a royal college or the British Medical Association)
In addition to these, you may have opportunities to attend courses and undertake other activities to aid your professional development. The College runs a leadership course specifically for SAS doctors which you may find useful.
When you have reached the top of the specialty doctor grade, you will have a high level of expertise and specialist knowledge. You will also have the ability and opportunity to work independently as agreed with the organisation in which you work.
Throughout your career, you should maintain a portfolio. This is a record of your work, reflecting your experience, training and achievements. It will be useful for appraisals, revalidation and applying for new jobs.
Your portfolio should include:
- Up to date CV
- Appraisal records
- Log book
- Certificates from courses and meetings attended
- Audit and research
- Thank you letters and complaints
Applying to the Specialist Register
If you decide you would like to be able to work as a consultant, you will need to gain entry to the GMC’s Specialist Register. To do this, you will need to apply through the Article 14 process for a Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration (CESR).
There are a number of points to remember when going through this process.
- Applicants should make sure that all of the requested information is included on the application form. The GMC will return incomplete applications and will not seek references or progress an application until they have all the information that they want.
- The photograph included should meet the same requirements as a photograph for a passport.
- Applicants are measured against the standard of someone who has just been awarded a CCT.
- Not all documents need to be certified. Documents such as log books only need to be authenticated which can be done by a colleague. Applicants should check requirements carefully to avoid unnecessary expense.
- Each page of the log book should be authenticated.
- The intercollegiate exam is open to all applicants and provides a good test of knowledge to bolster applications.
More information can be found on the GMC website.