Throughout the past years, Dental Protection has been contacted by an increasing number of dentists who have failed to pay their Annual Retention Fee (ARF) to the General Dental Council (GDC) by the 31 December 2018. Any dentist who has not paid their ARF by this deadline is removed by the GDC from the register and cannot practice in the UK until they have successfully been restored to the register.
Failing to pay the ARF by the end of this year will result in dentists needing to apply for restoration to the register in the New Year. Restoration requires the completion of the GDC application form and submission of the relevant evidence. The GDC states that the process will take at least 10 working days during which the dentist must not work. Dental Protection has witnessed the enormous distress and inconvenience that this has caused to dentists as patient appointments have to be cancelled and cash flow is interrupted. Knowingly working when not registered is illegal and a fitness to practice issue which can result in sanctions from the GDC.
The end of the year is also the last day of the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) year. The Enhanced CPD scheme was introduced this year which has seen the implementation of new CPD regulations. Under the ECPD scheme, dentists will need to complete a minimum of 100 hours verifiable CPD over their five year cycle as well as ensuring they declare at least 10 hours during any two year period. It is important to remind all dentists that any CPD done after the 31 December 2018 will not count towards the previous year.
Raj Rattan Director at Dental Protection said:
“We would like to remind our members of the importance of complying with the CPD rules. This year, there are some new requirements including a change in the reporting system, which needs dentists to complete the key annual statement and have a Personal Development Plan (PDP) in place. As far as we are aware, the consequences of not having a PDP have not yet resulted in a case. Nevertheless, we urge all dentists to comply fully with the requirements to avoid a fitness to practise investigation.”