CPD for dentists
As a registered dentist, you have a duty to keep your skills and knowledge up to date in order to give patients the best possible treatment and care. CPD is compulsory, but ideally it should simply set out a formal framework for what you are already doing. You can log and declare your hours online on eGDC
, our secure website for registered dental professionals.
What is CPD?
CPD is an activity which contributes to your professional development. There are two kinds of CPD – general and verifiable.
What is general CPD?
Activities which are of benefit to your continuing professional development but which are self-directed or which do not satisfy all of the verifiable CPD criteria can be recorded as general (non-verifiable) CPD. Examples of general CPD could be:
- Courses and lectures,
- Distance learning,
- Private study,
- Journal reading,
- Multimedia learning,
- Vocational training or general professional training study days,
- Educational elements of professional and specialist society meetings,
- Peer review and clinical audit, and
- Background research.
What is verifiable CPD?
To count as verifiable CPD, an activity must have:
- Concise educational aims and objectives,
- Clear anticipated outcomes,
- Quality controls, and
- Documentary proof.
In other words, you should know what the activity is about and what you will learn, how it’s going to benefit your patients, whether you can provide feedback on the activity and that you will be given documentary proof (such as a certificate) that you carried out the activity. The certificate should come from the provider or organiser, and should show the number of hours you spent on the activity, your name and registration number, as well as the subject of the activity.
How much CPD should I do?
You must complete at least 250 hours of CPD over your five year cycle. A minimum of 75 of these hours must be verifiable CPD. You must keep your CPD records for at least five years after the end of the cycle in which they were completed, as you may be asked to send them to us.
Which subjects should my CPD cover?
CPD is any activity which could reasonably be said to have benefited you professionally, so you should use your own judgment when choosing your subjects and activities. We recommend that you create a personal development plan, which will help you to meet your CPD requirement over your cycle.
As well as your chosen areas there are three core subjects which we strongly recommend you complete as part of your verifiable CPD. The suggested minimum number of hours for dentists in each subject are:
- medical emergencies - 10 hours per CPD cycle
- disinfection and decontamination - 5 hours per CPD cycle
- radiography and radiation protection - 5 hours per CPD cycle
We also recommend that you keep up to date by doing CPD in the following areas (verifiable or general, no suggested minimum number of hours):
- legal and ethical issues
- complaints handling
- oral cancer: improving early detection
When do I start my CPD?
Your CPD cycle is determined by your date of first registration. Your CPD cycle is always five years long, and this is the period in which you must complete your compulsory number of hours.
You can break down your CPD each year in a way which works for you, but you should spread it out across your cycle as evenly as possible. Only CPD carried out within your CPD cycle can be counted. Any activities you do before your cycle starts, or after it has ended, cannot be included.
When did you register?
Your 1st CPD cycle start date
On or after 1 January 2002
1 January in the year after 1st registration
Between 1 January 1990 and
31 December 2001
1 January 2002
Between 1 January 1980 and
31 December 1989
1 January 2003
On or before 31 December 1979
1 January 2004