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What is Professional Competence?

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is how doctors update, develop and enhance their knowledge, skills and attitudes throughout their working lives. Professional Competence is a formal way of recording your lifelong learning as a doctor. It demonstrates your commitment to developing and maintaining key skills and competencies throughout your medical career.

Requirement for Irish Medical Council

If you are registered on the Supervised, General or Specialist Division of the Medical Council Register, you are required to be enrolled on a Professional Competence Scheme. You must be enrolled in order to demonstrate that you are actively maintaining your Professional Competence in a manner recognised by the Medical Council. When you apply to retain your registration with the Medical Council, you are required to declare the name of your Professional Competence Scheme and the date you enrolled, or renewed your enrolment. Failure to make this declaration will place your continuing registration at risk. You only need to enrol on one Professional Competence Scheme, even if you have multiple registered specialties. If you’re not sure what type of registration you hold, you can check this through the Irish Medical Council Search for a Registered Doctor service.

The annual enrolment fee for a Professional Competence Scheme is €180 for CAI Fellows in Good Standing and €300 for all other applicants. This fee structure is agreed and set with the Medical Council.

Profession Competence Scheme Timeline

The Professional Competence Scheme (PCS) year runs from the 1st of May to 30th of April, in the following year. The Medical Council has requested that all registered medical practitioners enrol on a Professional Competence Scheme for 2018/19 in advance of completing their annual retention of registration with the Council this year. They have confirmed that this will be an annual requirement going forward. When you are completing your annual registration with the Medical Council, they will ask you to provide the following details:

  1. The name of your Professional Competence Scheme
  2. The date you paid your 2018/19 enrolment fee

If you have been enrolled on a previous year, but have not yet paid your fee for the 2018/19 year then you need to renew your enrolement.

For advice or information about Professional Competence please contact Sinead Byrne, PCS Administrator, on +353 1 265 0639 or email professionalcompetence@coa.ie.