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Northern Ireland: Update on clinical audit and peer reviews

28 October 2020


We'd like to remind practitioners in Northern Ireland that they can continue to undertake clinical audit and peer review sessions online using their chosen platform. Both clinical audit and peer review are accepted as verifiable Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and are payable under the SDR.


A recent communication from the Acting Chief Dental Officer has confirmed that all six CPDA sessions may be claimed for online activity. There are 4 CPD development outcomes listed by the GDC.


Peer review involves 4-8 practitioners from at least two practices meeting to discuss topics relevant to their day to day practice, whether that's clinical, professional or managerial. For clinical audit groups should use a clinical audit facilitator to help them choose a topic and design their audit. There are facilitators in each of the board areas and their contact details can be found on the BSO website. Clinical audit can involve either a single practitioner auditing one particular aspect of their practice or can be a collaborative audit where a number of practitioners audit the same aspect.


Both peer review and clinical audit requires one practitioner to act as convener to organise things and provide a write up of the meetings. The convener will be paid an additional sum for this. If you are struggling to find other practitioners to set up your clinical audit or peer review, please contact the CAPRAP secretary on caprap.bso@hscni.net who may be able to assist.


Once a peer review or clinical audit has been planned your application form will go before CAPRAP for approval before starting. Once completed the projects are written up and sent for payment on the requisite claim forms. The completed projects will then go before CAPRAP for approval before payment.


Chair of CAPRAP Paul Brennan has said "Whilst Clinical Audit and Peer Review has always provided a useful mechanism for practitioner learning and development it has proved an incredibly valuable resource at this difficult time. Where practitioners are operating in increasing isolation and do not have the same in-person learning opportunities at their disposal this ensures practitioners remain up to date, engaged and supported".


Please visit the BSO website where you can find the CAPRAP guidelines, applications forms and process maps to help you start your project.