Dear Focus on Health member,
Some important changes have been made in monitoring compliance when it comes to Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
Changes made and implemented in April 2021
The Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) has done away with random audits linked to specific time frames and will now require of you to illustrate continuous compliance by uploading certificates of activities when completed. The implication is that you will no longer upload your Individual CPD Activity Record (IAR).
Implications of this change
- One outcome is that you will not be able to access your practitioner’s card / proof of registration after paying your annual HPCSA fees if you are not compliant. This was the dilemma faced by some practitioners when paying their 2020 and 2021 fees.
- It is expected that the HPCSA will continue to develop their self-service CPD portal and that by 2022 one will have to illustrate compliance with CPD requirements before a practitioner’s card will be issued or made available.
- It is also possible that this portal will be developed in such a way that continuous reminders could be sent to practitioners reminding them of their compliance status.
Changes made in October 2021
For the Emergency Care Board submission of CEU’s achieved through uploading individual certificates of attendance / completion is NO LONGER necessary, as accredited service providers are now allowed to submit directly to the HPCSA. This is a pilot program, and if successful it will be rolled out some time in 2022 to other Boards as well.
Implications of this change
- For Emergency Care Board members ALL certificates dated before 20 October 2021 should be submitted via the HPCSA self-help portal as introduced in April 2021
- For ALL other Boards, submission remains as per the self-help portal introduced in 2021, meaning certificates should be uploaded on an individual basis.
Keep on managing your CPD portfolio
It remains best practice to at all times get and keep copies of certificates of attendance / completion to ensure you have a back up in case there is a need to prove compliance. In this regard we will continue to maintain and update your Individual CPD Activity Record (IAR)
What does compliance mean in practical terms?
You need DOUBLE the number of points required per year at all times.
Each point you accrue is valid for TWO years from the date of accrual. Because you have to accrue either 15 or 30 points per year depending on your profession, this means you will have 30 or 60 after two years.
Since it is a continuous system, the aim is that you do new CPD activities as old one’s lapse. For instance, you did a self-study activity on 15 May 2021 to the value of 3 CPD points. This activity will lapse on 14 May 2023 – meaning that either just before or after this date, you should complete another activity.
Thus, the aim is not to complete 30 or 60 points in one go, but then doing nothing for two years. You need to complete CPD activities every year. These CPD points may be made up from self-study activities, further studies, conferences or other types of courses such as Advanced Life Support (ALS).
When must I start doing CPD?
After you have completed your community service and have been registered as independent health care practitioner.
For your first year as independent practitioner you need either 15 or 30 points, and do not have to comply with the 30 or 60 points in total requirement immediately.
Complete activities within scope of practice
CPD activities should broadly fall within the scope of your practice.
What we can do and how you should contact us
Reach out to us by sending an email (firstname.lastname@example.org), completing an “audit assistance” request on the website, sending a WhatsApp to 074 230 3874 or complete a quick contact form. Include your HPCSA registration number or your FoH membership number. After you have reached out to us also follow the next two steps:
To manage these expected changes, Focus on Health will:
- Upload individual CPD certificates to the HPCSA’s website on your behalf once-off
- Assist you should you, while paying your annual HPCSA registration fee, be required to provide proof of CPD compliance
- Assist you to change personal detail with the HPCSA
- Liaise with the HPCSA to try and set up a system where uploads of CPD certificates can be done in bulk and not individually as is the case now
- Liaise with professional boards to ensure you are kept in the loop with regard to possible changes to the CPD system
CPD administration membership
We will also offer a CPD administration membership which allows exclusively for the administration of your CPD portfolio, but does not include any activities through which you can earn CEUs. Click here to access the application form.