Evidence of Child Safeguarding Competence for ARCP Panels 

The acquisition of competency in child safeguarding procedures and practice has always been part of the RCGP Curriculum. Evidence of achievement in this area has up to now not been explicitly checked and verified by ARCP panels. Following national discussions involving the GMC, Deans, GP Directors and the RCGP this is about to change.

GP ST3s and LEETs

All GP ST3s and LEETs are required to demonstrate to the final ARCP panel that they have acquired Child Safeguarding competence to a Level 3 standard. Acceptable evidence in support of this competence is to be recorded in the learning log and includes:

  • Evidence of having attended child protection training at a level 3 standard

and

  • Evidence of having been involved in child safeguarding processes

The panel will accept a variety of child safeguarding training events: a seminar/workshop as part of a day release course, in-house practice training and on-line learning modules. Importantly, there must be reflection on the learning. For now, a formal certificate will not be required but is desirable.

Involvement in safeguarding processes might be evidenced at a minimum, by one suitable reflection on attending a practice safeguarding meeting (e.g. with a health visitor), an SEA or a clinical encounter about a case involving a safeguarding issue that the trainee has been involved with.

In due course, the RCGP will be adding a section for the Educational Supervisor to validate that there is evidence of safeguarding competence within the portfolio, although this is not likely to have been done by the time of the summer 2015 ARCP Panels.

For the time being, the ARCP panel will therefore require the following statement from the ES on the final page of the ESR in the comments section:

I am satisfied that Dr………. has achieved Level 3 Safeguarding Competence. Evidence can be found in the learning log entries dated: …….and……….

  • Note that if this statement is not present within the final ESR before the trainees final ARCP, then the outcome will be “Insufficient Evidence” and the trainee will not be recommended for certification until satisfactory evidence is produced

GP ST1s and GP ST2s

In addition to the requirements of the final ARCP panel, the GP Schools expect that all Educational/Clinical supervisors will ensure that GP ST1s and GP ST2s have attended appropriate induction before, or close to starting any clinical placements where they have contact with children. This applies to both hospital (where the responsibility will be foremost with the hospital CS) and GP placements. In line with good employment practice, induction should include knowledge of local child safeguarding procedures, support/supervision and referral practices. It would be appropriate for trainees to document details of this induction within the learning log. It might be appropriate for the ES/CS to recommend that the GP ST undertakes some on-line learning or attend a course, if they have not had a recent update, and record this in the learning log.

Full details of Level 3 Safeguarding competencies can be found in the Intercollegiate Document (March 2014) here.Full details of the HEE Safeguarding Level 1-3 on-line training modules (which will count as the "learning and knowledge" part of the final ARCP safeguarding requirement) can be found here.Full details of the RCGP/NSPCC Safeguarding Children Toolkit for General Practice can be found here

We are aware that these changes might require additional planning and recording, but consider that there is a consensus that this area of our work is sufficiently important to require explicit evidence.

John Edwards and Andrew Eynon-Lewis

GP Assessment Leads HESW

16th March 2015