Dental CPD

The GDC’s current requirements have been in place since 2008 and they are set out in law. These can be found at the GDC’s website at

The GDC requires a minimum number of hours of CPD that you must do during the five year CPD cycle that applies to you. The total number of hours are then submitted at the end of the cycle. To find out more about which CPD cycle you fall into please refer to the GDC website.

Verifiable CPD is activity that meets the General Dental Council's definition of CPD

CPD for dental professionals is defined in law as lectures, seminars, courses, individual study and other activities, that can be included in your CPD record if it can be reasonably expected to advance your professional development as a dentist or dental care professional and is relevant to your practice or intended practice”.

and for which there is documentary evidence that you have undertaken the CPD and that the CPD has:

  • Concise educational aims and objectives 

  • Clear anticipated outcomes; and 

  • Quality controls (mechanism for giving feedback to improve quality) 

Guru258 will provide you with CPD certificates for all verifiable CPD that you undertake with us.

  • Examples of types of CPD may include:
  • Courses and lectures
  • Training days
  • Peer Review
  • Clinical Audit
  • Reading journals
  • Attending conferences
  • E-learning activity

If the CPD activity does not meet all of the GDC requirements for verifiable CPD, but it reasonably advances your development as a dental professional and is relevant to your practice or intended practice, you can still count the time you spend on the activity in your CPD record but not as verifiable CPD. This is sometimes referred to as general or non-verifiable CPD.

Failure to meet requirements
If you do not meet the CPD requirements the GDC may take you off the register. If this happens you will not be able to practise in the UK and will not be allowed back on the register until you can satisfy us that you have met the CPD requirements for restoring your name to the register.

Meeting the GDC’s Standards
All GDC registrants are expected to practise in accordance with Standards for the Dental Team within their scope of practice.

Standards for the Dental Team contains nine principles:

Principle 1     Put patients’ interests first
Principle 2     Communicate effectively with patients
Principle 3     Obtain valid consent
Principle 4     Maintain and protect patient’s information
Principle 5     Have a clear and effective complaints procedure
Principle 6     Work with colleagues in a way that is in patients’ best interests
Principle 7     Maintain, develop and work within your professional knowledge and skills
Principle 8     Raise concerns if patients are at risk
Principle 9     Make sure your personal behaviour maintains patients’ confidence in you and the dental profession.

The CPD you do to comply with the requirements should support you in meeting these principles and the standards. 

It is recommended to use a Personal Development Plan (PDP), to help you make good CPD decisions, and review it regularly, ideally with an appropriate colleague.

A PDP will enable you to decide in advance what CPD can most effectively advance your professional development and is relevant to your practice or intended practice.

Holding and maintaining a PDP will also enable you to identify your learning needs and consider them in a structured way. This should be in relation to your scope of practice and also to the work you do; the team in which you work; the patients you treat; and your contribution to safe and good quality dental care in the UK. A PDP will also help you to prioritise your CPD activity, and set out your actions to meet each need during your CPD cycle.

Reflection is an important part of CPD and peer review, and should form part of your personal development plan (PDP). You should use this space to reflect on what you have learnt, your experience and how it applies to your role. In particular, consider:

1) What did you learn.

2) What will you do more of as a result of this?

3) What will you keep doing as a result of this?

4) What will you do less of as a result of this?

5) How can you demonstrate you have implemented changes as a result of this?

6) Any other comments, thoughts, feelings?

CPD topics

Minimum verifiable CPD requirement.

  • Medical Emergencies: at least 10 hours in every CPD cycle (2 hours per year)
  • Disinfection and Decontamination: at least five hours in every CPD cycle
  • Radiography and radiation protection: at least five hours in every CPD cycle.

The GDC also recommends that you keep up to date by doing CPD in the following areas which complies with making a contribution to patient safety.

  • Legal and ethical issues
  • Complaints handling
  • Oral Cancer: Early detection
  • Safeguarding children and young people
  • Safeguarding vulnerable adults

Peer Review

Peer group provides an opportunity for groups of dentists and dental care professionals to review aspects of practice. The aim is to share experiences and identify areas in which changes can be made with the objective of improving the quality of service offered to patients.

Benefits of Peer Groups:

  • A method of sharing knowledge between colleagues

  • A stimulus for individual learning

  • A tool to change and improve practice performance

  • A method of supporting daily practice activities

  • A method for agreeing clinical standards for a clinical audit

  • A vehicle to improve communications and build relationships between local practices

Each member should make the following commitments to the peer group:

  • Be willing to be part of a peer group 

  • Be willing to attend all meetings or as many as possible 

  • Be willing to review aspects of their own practice and share this information 

  • Be open to implementing changes within their own practice to improve the quality 
of service offered to patients 

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