Frequently asked questions for adult and child safeguarding   

Why has the safeguarding requirements changed? 

Intercollegiate documents and the RCGP supplementary guidance, which has had four-nation approval, have recently been updated and published. In addition several GP practices have been criticised during CQC inspections for their GP trainees not being up to date with both level 3 adult and children safeguarding. The previous guidance on safeguarding for GP trainees was vague as to when this needed to be done and many trainees were not completing this until the end of training. There was also no requirement for adult safeguarding during GP training.

Do I have to complete the requirements as detailed in the Intercollegiate documents?

You need to be aware of these documents but they are based on a certain number of hours, which need to be completed. The RCGP curriculum and its assessment requirements will need you to document your understanding and experiences in adult and child safeguarding but not the amount of time it has taken you do this.

What are the minimum requirements?

You need to have demonstrated some form of knowledge update in your ePortfolio annually and a reflective log entry on both adult and child safeguarding.

How do I demonstrate my knowledge?

This can be done through elearning, attending local workshops, looking at the RCGP toolkits. There is a list of activities on the RCGP website as to how this can be done. For example attending a single workshop if it covered both adult and child safeguarding would be sufficient to cover both areas. The knowledge update needs to be done early in each training year and not left until the end.

Do adult safeguarding modules at level 3 exist as I haven’t been able to find one?

Trainees need to be compliant in adult safeguarding at level 3, but as this is a new recommendation it is recognised that these are not yet widely available. The knowledge of adult safeguarding can still be done through reading and any encounters with patients where safeguarding has been a concern. It is not expected for you to pay personally for a commercial level 3 adult safeguarding course.

If I haven’t been directly involved in a safeguarding case, how do I write a reflective entry?

It is recognised that not every trainee will be directly involved in clinical cases on safeguarding, but this can be achieved through attending local safeguarding meetings, group discussions, webinars, reading about cases for example.

I am in ST1 but I don't have a GP placement during this time, do I have to complete the child safeguarding requirements?

If you have placements, which involve children for example Paediatrics, Accident and Emergency, Primary care, Child Psychiatry etc then you will need to have completed the child safeguarding requirements and demonstrated these in your Portfolio. If your placements for that year do not involve children then you would not be expected to include this in your Portfolio.

I am in ST1 but I don't do Primary Care until my last post in ST1. The requirements state that I need to demonstrate my knowledge in child safeguarding early in the training year but does this apply to me?

As above you wouldn't need to demonstrate your understanding in safeguarding until you started a post which involved children, so although you wouldn't be doing this at the beginning of your ST1 time, it would need to be done at the start of your Primary care post and not left until it was nearly over.

I completed adult and child safeguarding in my foundation post, do I need to do it again?

Yes - the requirements are for a knowledge update in each year of training ST1/2/3 and a reflective entry for both adult and child safeguarding.

I am a ST3 trainee what do I have to do before my next ARCP?

Child safeguarding
In ST3 it has always been a requirement for CCT for you to have evidence of both the knowledge of child safeguarding and a reflective entry this has not changed, only we would encourage you to complete the knowledge component as soon as possible if this is not already done.

I am a ST1/2 trainee what do I have to do before my next ARCP?

Child safeguarding
For trainees in ST1 and ST2 if they have had a placement which includes or potentially includes working with children then a knowledge update and a reflective entry on child safeguarding will be needed if your next ARCP is after June 2020. If your ARCP is before June 2020 it is good practice to have done this but it would not result in an adverse outcome.

What happens at my next ARCP in terms of adult safeguarding?

For all trainees who have ARCPs before June 2020, it is good practice to have included both a knowledge update and reflective log entry on adult safeguarding, but it would not result in an adverse outcome if not available.

For all trainees who have ARCPs after June 2020 then a knowledge update and reflective entry are required. Ideally the knowledge level should be at level 3 but trainees will not get an adverse outcome if this has not been achieved due to the current lack of resources. It is however not acceptable to have no reference to adult safeguarding in your Portfolio.