Why does the ARCP matter?
The ARCP is an important milestone in your training, providing evidence that you are progressing satisfactorily with your career. The ARCP also has a very important role in facilitating your revalidation with the GMC. You must therefore take the process seriously and provide all documentation on time. The information needs to be submitted two weeks before the ARCP date to enable your portfolio to be seen prior to the day.
What is an ARCP?
The Annual Review of Competency Progression (ARCP) is the process whereby all assessments of a trainee’s knowledge, skills and attitudes throughout the year are brought together for review at Deanery level. Ultimately, the “ARCP outcome” is a Yes/No decision on whether or not you are progressing well enough to move on to your next year of training. You will be invited to ARCP once a year (even if out-of-programme for any reason). In ICM we have two ARCP period - most are in the summer but about a third of people are seen in the winter - either before or just after Christmas. These dates are set at least six months in advance. You should l be given at least 6 weeks’ notice of the date and you must make sure all your evidence is submitted by the deadline of 2 weeks before the ARCP. We are working towards everyone having only one ARCP a year (including all those doing two or even three specialties). We can of course work around maternity leave so you won’t need to come in the middle of your time off.
Who can sign my WPBA?
Some WPBA can be completed by senior trainees, but should be completed by a consultant. For information on which specific WPBA a consultant must complete, please talk to the local tutor for the specialty and hospital in which you are working. They will tell you which seniors within your department can sign your forms or etickets.
Preparing for your ARCP
It is essential that you meet with your ES several weeks prior to the ARCP date to complete your end of attachment appraisal and ESSR. The ESSR is the only means by which your ES can give the ARCP panel their professional opinion on your progress. Your ES will also make a recommendation as to the outcome the ARCP should award. Failure to complete the ESSR prior to the ARCP will mean you automatically get an outcome 5 (insufficient evidence supplied). It is your responsibility to ensure you meet with your ES to do this, not the other way round. Please get in touch if you are struggling to do this.
And the Form R?
Every year you will be asked by the Deanery to complete a Form R and a wider scope of practice form and failure to submit these to the Deanery at least 2 weeks prior to your ARCP date will result in an automatic outcome 5 (insufficient evidence supplied) at ARCP.
What's the ICM ARCP like?
The ARCP panel is composed of consultant representatives from the training departments, the TPD, a lay member, a deanery programme manager and usually a deanery representative from an unrelated specialty. The panel reviews your portfolio of evidence and decides on your ARCP outcome.
The outcome of your ARCP will have been decided by the panel before you enter the room. They will then invite you into the room to tell you the outcome and have a brief chat about the coming year. The intention is that the outcome you are given by the ARCP panel should not come as a surprise. Through your meetings with your ES you should have a clear idea of what outcome you are likely to get, because you should be well aware of how you are progressing with your training.
What outcomes are there?
The ARCP panel will give you one of six outcomes:
Outcome 1: Satisfactory progress confirmed, can move onto next stage of training.
Outcome 2: Some additional competences are needed (e.g. more WPBA) but training does not need to be extended. With this outcome you will be given a time limit by which you need to have provided the additional evidence that you have completed the outstanding competences. If you are unable to do this within the time-frame given then training may need to be extended.
Outcome 3: The panel think you cannot progress further without additional training time. The panel will decide how long the extension should be.
Outcome 4: You are released from the training programme before completing your training. This will usually be due to repeated failure to progress.
Outcome 5: You have not provided the panel with sufficient evidence for them to be able to make a decision. This includes failure to complete an ESSR, or form R. With a little preparation, this outcome is largely avoidable.
Outcome 6: This is the final sign-off at the end of training, and indicates you have satisfactorily completed all the requirements of the ICM CCT programme.
8. Do I really need an ICM ARCP every year?
Yes! For all those on the joint programme there is only one outcome issued a year but dual trainees receive an outcome for each specialty every year of training. And remember that on a dual programme each individual programme is shorted by nature of being on a dual programme so every year - there needs to be an ES report for ICM.