PCS News May 2016

PCS 2015/16 Year End. Start of new PCS Year

The PCS 2015/16 year ended on 30th April 2016, with the online CPD diary year left open for logging until 11th May. Initial figures show a very high percentage of doctors reached or exceeded the annual minimum requirements of the PCS. Those who didn’t log the minimum requirements include doctors who joined the PCS mid-way through the year and a small number with periods of certified illness or maternity leave.

Statements of Participation in a Professional Competence Scheme will be issued in the coming days to all who completed the 2015/16 PCS year. Invoices for the PCS annual fee (which remains at €252 for the sixth year running) will also be issued shortly. Please note any doctor who wishes to remain enrolled in the PCS must pay the annual fee. 

Completing an annual Clinical (Practice) Audit continues to be a challenge for some psychiatrists. We will work with our members throughout this PCS year to make Clinical (Practice) Audit requirements as clear and accessible as possible. We advise taking some time to plan your Professional Competence activities throughout the coming year to ensure the PCS annual minimum requirements for External, Internal, Personal CPD and Clinical (Practice) Audit are met or exceeded.


Provision to Medical Council of list of all enrolled on PCS as at end April 2016

On 30th April we provided the Medical Council with a list of names and MCRNs of those doctors enrolled on our PCS. This request was made by the Medical Council to all training bodies in January 2016, under S95 of the Medical Practitioners Act and to support its functions under S91 of the Act. No information on credit accrual for any individual doctor was supplied – only names and MCRNs.

Noting Maternity Leave / certified Sick Leave > 3 mths on PCS Annual Statements

For those doctors who contacted us regarding periods of certified leave such as maternity leave or sick leave longer than 3 months in the 2015/16 PCS year, we noted the circumstances on our files and if requested we annotated their Statement of Participation in a PCS. If these circumstances pertain to you during the 2016/17 PCS year, please do let us know. Doctors who wish these circumstances to be (1) noted on their annual Statement of Participation in a Professional Competence Scheme and (2) taken into account in the event of the Medical Council reviewing their PCS details, should: 

(a) email or write to the college’s PCS Department, marking correspondence Private & Confidential 

(b) include the nature of the extenuating circumstance (i.e. sick leave, maternity leave) 

(c) include the (estimated) dates of the period of certified leave 

(d) do not send our PCS Department documentation, certification, sick notes etc. Keep them with your CPD files. We will note the information confidentially on our Professional Competence files. An annotation will be made on the relevant year on the doctor’s Statement of Participation in a Professional Competence Scheme, with the text “Period of certified absence >3 months reported”.

 The Medical Council has published guidance on its website.


Professional Competence - Verification Process

Many thanks to those who were randomly selected to participate in the verification process on the 2014/15 PCS year. The entire review process is almost completed and individual feedback is being provided to each psychiatrist. The verification process is a valuable tool to identify common issues and difficulties encountered by our psychiatrists in the Professional Competence Scheme, and to identify the areas of support we need to focus on in coming years. 

Work on the 2015/16 Verification Process is commencing. Doctors will again be randomly selected to participate. We will also be following up with the small number of psychiatrists who were unsuccessful in the 2013/14 verification process.

Medical Council Patient Feedback Pilot - update

Over 50 psychiatrists are participating in the Medical Council Patient Feedback pilot. The deadline for returning completed questionnaires to Edgecumbe (the research company) is 27th May. The Medical Council will issue CPD certificates directly to participants once Edgecumbe has confirmed receipt of documentation. Participants will have an opportunity to give feedback on the suitability, structure and processes of the pilot to the Medical Council after the pilot is completed.

Recognition of PCS by Royal College of Physicians & Surgeons of Canada

Back in 2009 and again last year, we completed detailed surveys from the Canadian Royal College on our Professional Competence Scheme. The Royal College in Canada has once again confirmed recognition of substantive equivalency between our CPsychI PCS and the Royal College’s Maintenance of Certification programme for a further 5 year period. This means that Fellows of the Royal College who are living and practising in Ireland can use the CPsychI PCS to maintain their membership and fellowship with the Royal College in Canada.

CPD Meetings

FRIDAY EVENING 30TH SEPTEMBER & SATURDAY MORNING 1ST OCTOBER 2016 (5 External CPD credits) CPD educational meeting organised by PIPSIG (Private & Independent Practice Special Interest Group) Sandymount Hotel, Dublin 4. Meeting open to PIPSIG members and all psychiatrists on the PCS. 

Friday evening 30th September: 6-8pm. 2 presenters, 2 CPD credits. 

Saturday morning 1st October: 09.30am – 1pm. 3 presenters, 3 CPD credits. Full programme of topics and speakers will be confirmed and circulated soon. 

FRIDAY 14TH OCTOBER 2016: Complexity of Post-Traumatic Reactions 

Royal Marine Hotel, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin. European Psychiatric Assoc. supported meeting with: 

  • Prof Tanja Frančišković, Dept of Psychiatry & Psychological Medicine, University of Rijeka, Croatia 
  • Asst. Prof. Dolores Britvić, Split, Croatia 
  • Dr Brian Fitzmaurice, Consultant Adult Psychiatrist, HSE Wicklow & TCD Dr 
  • Michael Duffy, Specialist MSc (Trauma) in CBT, Queens University Belfast & Sen Cognitive Psychotherapist 

Search the Events and Courses list to see how many external CPD credits have been awarded for a particular meeting, course or event.


HOT TOPICS IN PSYCHIATRY – a series of monthly evening CPD meetings – 2 CPD credits 

Hot Topics will kick off again on 15TH SEPTEMBER 2016, with: 

Psychiatric Advance Directives - Dr Enda Dooley and Mental Capacity and the Assisted Decision Making (Capacity) Act 2015 – Prof Brendan Kelly. 

Save these Hot Topic Thursdays in your diary: 

2016: Thursdays 15th September • 20th October • 24th November. Provisional - 2017: Thursdays 19th January • 16th February • 23rd March • 27th April. 

The full list of dates, topics and speakers will be confirmed and will be available on the Meeting & Events list on www.irishpsychiatry.ie soon. Online booking will be available to college members. 

Many thanks to all our presenters and attendees to date. The meetings have been very well supported and are proving a relevant and useful source of External CPD credits.

Making HOT TOPICS available to the regions 

If you are based outside of Dublin and would like to bring a Hot Topics meeting to your area, please do contact us. We would be delighted to work with you to organise a Hot Topics meeting in any of the regions.

HOT TOPICS on Moodle 

With the assistance of Prof David Burke and some college members who are kindly giving their time and expertise, we continue to work on the packaging of recorded Hot Topics presentations for online learning and CPD on the college’s Moodle platform. We will have online material available very soon.