Zoe Parker, Education Officer at COT, discusses critical reflection. Follow Zoe
Everybody probably has their own favourite answer to this question but I think that Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is absolutely essential in order to maintain professionalism.
Professionalism is hard to define but my personal view is that it is fundamentally about taking pride in our practice.
Here’s a recent timeline that I think is relevant to the question because it makes it all too evident what harm can ensue when health and care practitioners do not behave professionally:
Winterbourne Review ‘Transforming Care: A national response to Winterbourne View Hospital (December 2012)
Francis Inquiries 2010
the Executive summary of the Francis Inquiry 2013.
The initial Government response ‘Patients First and Foremost’ (March 2013)
Cavendish Review ‘An Independent review into healthcare Assistants and Support Workers in the NHS and Social care Settings’ (July 2013)
Keogh review ‘Review into the quality of care and treatment provided by 14 hospital Trusts in England’ (July 2013)
Berwick Review ‘Improving the Safety of patients in England’ (March 2013).
It is sobering to think about the suffering and distress on the part of patients and their families that these reports reveal and from which they arise. I am delighted that there is now such a strong online movement of committed professionals dedicated to compassionate care and, on Twitter especially, I see occupational therapy personnel getting involved in those conversations. I mentioned our Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct in my last post about critical reflection. Of course that’s a crucial document when considering professionalism and the point of CPD.
Other COT publications of great relevance to reflect upon in this context are the Education Policy Briefing about Values Based Recruitment for Occupational Therapists and the Supervision guidance for occupational therapists and their managers.
Our regulator the HCPC recently published an interesting report arising from their ongoing research into professionalism: Preventing small problems from becoming big problems in health and care. I really relish the idea that we have a research-based regulator and this report makes interesting reading./
What’s your view about the point of CPD and these thoughts on professionalism? Please do comment below!