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Complaints, Investigations and Significant Events

What do I need to do if I have been named in a complaint, significant event or never event?

You are not alone. These situations are a common occurrence which, when dealt with correctly, can actually provide you with valuable learning material.


The first step is to speak with your Education Supervisor (ES) who will be able to offer you support and guidance.


An important part of being involved in such incidents is being able to reflect on what has happened. There will always be learning points, not just for yourself but perhaps the wider team or department. Being able to reflect shows that you have considered your part and that you are aware of what could have been done differently.


It is important that you declare your involvement, however great or small, on the Form R. You will need to indicate the nature of the event, whether it has been resolved and where we can find your reflection e.g. the specific location in your e-portfolio.

If you are unsure of whether you need to declare something, don't be afraid to share this on the form R. It is much better to 'over-share' as failure to declare something significant may indicate a probity issue. Do get in touch if you are unsure, we are here to help

What will the revalidation team be looking for?

We will be looking for assurance that you have been open and reflective following an incident or complaint.

We need to ensure that there are no Fitness to Practice concerns. When a serious issue emerges we usually receive this information from more than one source prompting us to triangulate the information.

It is important to note that we are used to seeing a large number of declarations for all sorts of issues. We are looking to ensure that you are safe to practise. The majority of incidents and complaints are resolved and reflected on very well and cause no concern to us.

Concerns arise when we see a theme emerging, for example when a trainee has several complaints made relating to the same issue. One complaint which is well reflected on and resolved does not alarm us.

Keep the Revalidation team up to date

It is important that you keep us informed of the progress of any investigations as it can effect the recommendation we make to the GMC when your revalidation is due. We are unable to submit a recommendation to revalidate whilst an investigation is on-going. This applies even if you are named as part of a wider team. Once the investigation has closed we will then be able to submit a revalidation recommendation so it is essential that you let us know -

I have been referred to the GMC - What happens next?

Being referred to the GMC can be a stressful event and you will need to access support.

Please read our document on what to do following a referral as this provides detailed advice on what to do and who can help.

The GMC will contact the revalidation team to notify us of the referral, however, it is good practice to also let us know directly once you are aware of a referral.

Inquests - writing statements and attending as a witness

Please see our guidance on Coroner's Inquests which gives an overview of the process and how you may be involved. Specific support will be available to you from your Trust (usually the Governance team) as well as from your Educational Supervisor.

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