The Professional Board for Speech, Language and Hearing (SLH) is concerned about the low level of its registered healthcare practitioners’ compliance to the minimum requirements of the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programme. The aim of CPD is to ensure that healthcare practitioners’ skills, knowledge, experience and performance are continually updated to ensure provision of best care to patients, and that healthcare practitioners contribute to the improvement of overall health systems outcomes of the country.
All registered healthcare practitioners are required to be always CPD compliant, to remain registered with the Health Professional Council of South Africa (HPCSA) and to enable them to practise their professions.
In 2021, the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) introduced an online self-service platform wherein all healthcare practitioners can submit and upload evidence of CPD compliance, such as CPD certificates. Prior to this, the HPCSA randomly drew a sample of about 10% of registered practitioners from the HPCSA database to audit compliance. Non-compliant healthcare practitioners were then granted a six-month grace period in which to become CPD compliant. Once the grace period had elapsed, a non-compliant practitioner was again audited to check his/her compliance status. If after the period of six months, a healthcare practitioner was still not compliant, the names of bona fide non-compliant healthcare practitioners were submitted to the relevant Professional Boards for non-compliance actioning, such as:
- Changing the category of registration to supervised practice;
- Writing of Board Examination;
- Suspension from the register;
- Any other resolution action necessary to address the non-compliance.
The SLH urges all registered practitioners to take urgent measures to ensure that they become CPD compliant. The first step would be to log in to the online services to check real time CPD compliance status, then if non-compliant, liaise with the CPD Service Provider to submit all CPD certificates from the past 24 months to the HPCSA for capturing and record keeping, if not done already. The HPCSA is continuously working on the online self-service platform to improve its user-friendliness.
Accredited Service Providers are now able to submit evidence of CPD compliance on behalf of the practitioners (except for international providers, published manuscripts and formal qualifications or any other self-study activities), for HPCSA’s upload and validation. It is, however, important to remember that it remains the responsibility of each registered professional to always ensure that they are CPD compliant.
The CPD programme requires that SLH practitioners accumulate a total of 30 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) per twelve-month period, of which five CEUs should relate to ethics, human rights and medical law. Each CEU is valid for 24 months from the date on which the activity took place (or ended, in the event of post-graduate studies) after which it lapses. This means that practitioners should aim to accumulate a balance of 60 CEUs by the end of their second year of practice, which is the period at which CPD compliance is determined, and thereafter top-up the balance through additional CPD as each 24 – month validity period expires.
Submit CPD online
The CPD programme has been streamlined and practitioners are advised to familiarise themselves with the new process to meet their HPCSA CPD requirements. In this article we explain how to update Continued Education Units (CEUs) and raise a Continued Professional Development (CPD) service request on the HPCSA website.
Last Updated on 6 September 2023 by HPCSA Corporate Affairs