|· New Registrant representatives
Thank you to those of you who took part in the ballot to elect two new registrant representatives to the RCT’s Management Panel this year. It was pleasing to note that 30% of registrants voted in the ballot; previously this had been 16%. The Management Panel makes all the important decisions about the running of the register, so it is important that you have your say in who represents you on it.
I am sure you will join me in welcoming to the Management Panel your chosen registrant representatives:-
Elizabeth Crawford, is a Specialist Technologist within the Radiological Physics department of Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and is keen to see entry routes into all technologist professions clarified, so that new starters can identify a clear career path and, ultimately, work towards registration as a respected and recognised member of the Healthcare Science community.
David Donohue, is a Chief Clinical Technologist at South Tyneside Hospital. The Clinical Technologist profession is important to David and he believes a strong professional organisation and regulation is important for growth, development and security.
We were also delighted to welcome Rosemary Anderton and Phil Goddard, our two lay representatives, to their first meeting of the Management Panel in February.
|· RCT Registrar’s Update 2016
Did you know that you can check your registration details on the RCT register? Click search register and type in your surname or registration number. If you have moved work location and would like this amended, please send an email to email@example.com.
|· New – Fitness to Practise procedure updated
The former disciplinary procedure has been updated and renamed the Fitness to Practise procedure, to take account of issues which may be reported to the RCT involving either a registrant’s health (which is not a disciplinary issue), or his/her conduct (which may be). The other main changes that have taken place involve the decision to make hearings routinely open to the public (which is usual practice for statutory registers); changes to the composition of the appeals panel; and clarification of the process for handling potential complaints that come to light via news or social media sources rather than by individual complaints.
The revised Fitness to Practise procedure, which was approved by the RCT Management Panel at its February meeting, can be found on the RCT website.
|· New – Equivalence Route – Physics
The Physics Standards for the Equivalence Route have now been finalised and this route is currently being piloted. Once the pilot has been completed, the route will be formally launched and the relevant information will be added to the RCT website. If you think that you may be eligible to apply via the Physics Equivalence route and would like us to contact you once the route is launched, email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, email address, telephone number, work location and the Scope of Practice you are working under.
|· Help with your CPD
All Registrants are required to keep up to date with their CPD and be able to demonstrate that they are doing so. Further information has been added to the RCT website to help you to maintain your CPD record. This information includes potential CPD activities, together with example submissions from a Rehabilitation Engineer, Radiotherapy Technologist and a Nuclear Medicine Technologist, to help you prepare your own portfolio. This year’s CPD audit takes place in May, and we will be contacting a random sample of registrants in March to ask for a summary of their CPD record.
· Publicising YOUR register
Don’t forget you can put under your email signature that you are a member of an Accredited Register, plus this logo:
We also have a leaflet available for you to put out in your Department to let patients know about the RCT – which helps to highlight to your employer that you are a registered professional. Email email@example.com if you would like us to send you some hard copies. If you have already requested copies, and have not yet received them, please be assured that they will be with you as soon as possible.
|· Equivalence Assessors Required
The equivalence route for registration is an area where we are expecting growth and we are looking to expand the team of assessors to cover future needs. If you believe that you have the skills to assess technical portfolios we would like to hear from you. We are planning a training day for new and existing assessors in Q2 of 2016.
CPD Assessors required
Would you like to get involved in the Register of Technologists, and do you have an interest in continuing professional development? We are looking to expand the assessor pool this year and it is a great opportunity to expand your own professional development. Please do get in touch if this is something that you feel would be beneficial. It is likely that training will take place on 17th or 18th May 2016 with the opportunity to include assessment.
|· New – Registration status explained
A new field has been added to the register to provide the public with further assurance of your registration status and to bring the register in line with other voluntary and statutory registers. The status fields are:-
– Registered – this means that the registrant is currently registered with no current finding or cautions
– Registered finding – this means that the registrant has had been found to have a minor concern within the last 5 years
– Registered caution – this means that the registrant has had a written reprimand placed on them within the last 5 years
– Deregistered suspension conduct – this means that the registrant has been temporarily suspended due to a conduct related issue
– Deregistered suspension health – this means that the registrant has been temporarily suspended due to a health related issue
– Deregistered – this means that the registrant has been expelled from the Register.
Where there has been a ‘Fitness to Practice’ (previously called ‘disciplinary’) hearing involving a registrant, a summary of the case will appear on the website, in line with best practice of other voluntary and statutory registers, and there will be a link from the register page to this page. This is so that the public can be assured that the individual has been appropriately investigated in order to protect patient safety, and can see why they have been cautioned or deregistered.
|· RCT Management Panel Meeting minutes
The summary minutes of the RCTMP held on 10th February 2016 are available via the RCT website. This enables Registrants to keep up with the discussions and decisions being made on their behalf.
|· Career Break Policy
The career break policy has been developed to enable Registrants to take an extended period of unpaid time away from work in order to balance their career with other commitments, responsibilities and interest.
Registrants who are planning to take a career break are required to notify the Registrar and will be removed upon commencement of their break. If you are taking a career break, please complete the relevant form which is available on the RCT website and forward this to the Registrar at least one month prior to the commencement of your career break. The full policy can be found here.
The RCT Registrar
|November 2015 Registrar’s Update
Lay membership of RCTMP
As part of the RCT’s successful application for Accredited Register status, the Professional Standards Authority (PSA) has placed a requirement on the RCT to recruit lay members to join the Management Panel. All other bodies involved in professional regulation have lay members on their main Boards, in many cases forming a majority of members. Lay members of the Panel will be full members of the Panel, working under the Terms of Reference, entitled to vote and forming part of the quorum of the meeting. They will bring an external perspective to the work of the Management Panel, helping to maintain focus on the key purpose of the RCT, to protect the public by settings standards for the training, practice and conduct of registrants. The Management Panel appointed two lay members to its membership at its October meeting. We welcome Phil Goddard: a consultant with many years’ experience in the energy sector, including R&D, product and process development, training and project management; and Rosemary Anderton, a science and psychology teacher, with an MSc in Health Care Ethics, to the panel in this capacity. They will attend their first Panel meeting in February. In the meantime they will be visiting the clinical engineering and nuclear medicine departments at Bradford Royal Infirmary at the invitation of Panel member Iain Threlkeld, to learn more about the work of clinical technologists.
|RCT Management Panel Meeting minutes
The summary minutes of the RCTMP held on 14th October 2015 are available via the RCT website. This enables Registrants to keep up with the discussions and decisions being made on their behalf.
|Public attendance at Panel meetings
In line with best practice, the RCT Management Panel has agreed to maximise the transparency of its work by allowing any member of the public to attend its meetings in an observation capacity. The future dates will be published in advance of the meeting on the RCT website and any member of the public wishing to attend should notify the Administration Manager. A maximum of 6 members of the public will be allowed to observe the open proceedings; there may be a requirement for a closed session as part the meeting.
|Equivalence Standards for Physics
The RCTMP is keen to ensure the draft standards are piloted and welcome interest from registrants who would like to lead the process for Nuclear Medicine and Radiotherapy Physics. The panel will also be looking for pilot applicants from its waiting list. If there is a colleague who you think may be interested please ask them to get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org
|Renewal fees to increase for 2016
The costs of running the RCT have been increasing steadily, and now include the costs of the annual CPD audit, of assessor training and of PSA accreditation. So with effect from 1st January 2016 the renewal fee for Registrants will be increased to £17.50. Whilst increases in fees are never welcome, it is worth remembering that:
· renewal fees have not risen for 15 years
· the new fee is set to just cover costs, and no more
· the RCT is now an Accredited Register, increasing its status with the NHS
· other registers charge considerably more:
o AHCS register – £50/year
o HCPC – £90
Registrants sometimes ask: “But what do I get for my registration fee?” It is important to remember that any register only provides registration, indicating achievement of standards. Registrants don’t get anything more than this ‘quality mark’ of their practice. That’s why the RCT encourages registrants to join a professional body as well, in order to get member benefits, support and opportunities.
|Social media guidelines
In 2013, the Professional Conduct Committee of the RCT suspended a registrant for five years for abuse of social media. To assist registrants, the RCT Management Panel has approved a set of guidelines for the use of social media. The guidelines are intended to make RCT registrants aware of the positive and negative impact that their social media use can have, and give guidance on appropriate use of social media. The Guidelines should be read alongside the RCT Code of Professional Conduct.
|Direct Debit for 2016 Renewals
Don’t miss out on the easy way to renew your registration – set up a Direct Debit and make sure your registration doesn’t lapse. Download the form here.
|Registrants on Panel
We have received six applications for the two recently advertised Registrant Representative posts on the RCTMP. A ballot is being conducted involving all RCT Registrants and an email has been sent to you with voting instructions. The ballot is being conducted via SurveyMonkey and will close on Friday 27th November 2015, so don’t delay in casting your vote. The results will be communicated to all Registrants in due course.
The RCT Registrar
Many of you will know that we submitted an application to the PSA to gain accredited voluntary register status. The management team have been involved in a number of site visits and interviews over the last couple of months. The report and final decision are expected in August. As soon as the details become available we will provide a further update.
|New RCT Panel Members
We are pleased to welcome two new IPEM members to the RCT Management panel.
Paul Blackett is an Engineering Operations Manager at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals, a moderator on the IPEM Technologist Training Scheme, as well as sitting on various bodies and Special Interest Groups.
Paula Todd is a Chief Clinical Technologist at the Royal Victoria Hospital and is also a Moderator for the IPEM Technologist Training Scheme.
Both Paul and Paula have been RCT Registrants for a number of years and are excellent additions to the panel.
|Engineering Equivalence Route Now Open
The RCT Equivalence Route is designed to enable technologists to achieve registration by demonstrating that their levels of knowledge and skills are at least equivalent to those offered by the relevant Scope of Practice and The RCT Equivalence Standards – Engineering or Physics. We are very pleased to report that after extensive piloting, the engineering route has now been launched. Full details of how to apply via this route are outlined on the RCT website. The Engineering Scopes of Practice cover the following:
Ø Medical Engineering
Ø Radiation Engineering
Ø Rehabilitation Engineering
Ø Renal Technology
The physics route is currently under development and we hope to be able to launch this shortly.
A new RCT leaflet is under development which aims to support patients and increase the public awareness of the Register. Promoting the valuable work of registrants and the standards which you have met is vital for public protection. Copies of the leaflet will be circulated to NHS Trusts and we would encourage you to request copies for display in your department. To request copies email email@example.com
|IPEM Public Engagement Panel
IPEM’s Public Engagement Panel (PEP) is a new network of volunteers who are not part of the health-related physics, engineering or technologist professions, and not members of IPEM. The aim is to bring a wider perspective to the work of the Institute. At the initial meeting members will be invited to join the RCT Management Panel. For further information on the panel, please visit the IPEM website.
|CPD Audit Outcome
A random percentage of RCT Registrants were selected for audit this year. The audit has now taken place and has highlighted to the management panel that further support for registrants is required. We will, over the summer, develop additional content to support you in recording your development activities and provide regular updates.
As part of our ongoing commitment to ensure that entry to the Register is robust we are seeking interest from those who wish to become assessors for the equivalence route. Those expressing an interest will be invited to undertake training at a planned workshop in September 2015.
|Call for two new Registrant Panel Members
There are two Registrant Panel Member posts available from September. All RCT Registrants are eligible to apply. The criteria and the role description will be sent to all registrants and where there are more applications than posts a ballot will be held. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
|RCT ‘Who’s Who’
The management panel have put together a document as a helpful, informal resource for registrants to explain who the bodies are which are responsible for the education and registration of technologists in the UK. Click here to view.
It is with great sadness that I have to advise you that Alistair Mitchell, an RCT Management Panel member, has passed away. Alistair was an active member of the clinical technologists training scheme and CPD Audit panel. His valued contribution will be greatly missed.
The RCT Registrar
|Meeting with Department of Health about statutory registration
Andy Mosson, the RCT Registrar, recently met Professor Sue Hill, Chief Scientific Officer, and Chris Harris from the Department of Health, who is responsible for non-registered groups, along with two representatives from the Registration Council for Clinical Physiologists, on behalf of the Alliance for Patient Safety, to press the case for statutory registration. RCCP presented some case studies of failures in the voluntary registration system which were very similar in nature to those prepared by RCT for the HCPC.
Andy reported: ‘It is very apparent that the DH view is not changing and accredited voluntary registration is still the DH preferred option. This is controlled by government policy and, although the officials can present opinions to the policy makers, they cannot make this policy themselves. They agreed to take the evidence on board but, particularly with an election looming, we should not expect any change soon. ’In the meeting, Professor Hill expressed disappointment that RCT had not come to an agreement with AHCS over registration and was surprised to hear the RCT’s view of events – that the offer from the Academy of a cluster register was unacceptable as it would have involved the majority of RCT registrants having to re-apply for registration through an expensive equivalence route.
Andy said: ‘I explained that, after our initial meeting with them, AHCS had not returned to us with any specific proposals and had left RCT with the understanding that AHCS did not want to combine the existing register with their own. Professor Hill was very surprised by this and will go back to AHCS to see if channels of communication could be re-opened. This also helped her understand why RCT felt pursuing accreditation independently was our only option.’
We are now in the final stages of our application to the PSA to become an Accredited Voluntary Register, with just a few more queries to answer before our application is considered by the PSA’s panel.
Further to the Registrar’s Update in September 2014; it has been decided to issue all Registrants with a one off certificate stating their year of registration, with instructions for interested parties to refer to the online register to check if the registration is still current. These will be forwarded in the next few weeks. Please keep your certificate safe as annual certificates are no longer issued.
|Support for CPD auditees
Following recent updates on the need for CPD, the audit is planned to start at the end of March. Registrants will be selected at random and asked to submit details of their activities. For those auditees who have been selected and need support there is help at hand. A small number of assessors have kindly agreed to provide support this year and can be contacted through the RCT office. Please read the Types of CPD activity and examples by clicking here.
|Equivalence routes to registration
Further development work is ongoing in the areas of:-
As soon as further information is available, details will be made available via the website.
The RCT Registrar