|What is CPD|
The following definition was suggested by Chris Vanswol, CPD development officer, and has been adopted by the Working Party.
Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is the ongoing maintenance and growth of the knowledge and skills required for a professional to remain competent in his or her occupation for the benefit of that professional, the patient and the public.
Why does the ACPSEM need a CPD Program?
The ACPSEM has developed accreditation programs which will ensure that those who are accredited have achieved recognized levels of competence in their field. How can we demonstrate that those who have been accredited are maintaining their skills at the appropriate level? A Continuing Professional Development Program will provide members with an incentive to continue updating their knowledge and skills, together with tools for monitoring and recording their development activities.
Similar programs are in operation at most other professional organizations, such as the American Association of Physicists in Medicine, The Institute of Physicists and Engineers in Medicine, The Institute of Engineers Australia and the Australasian Institute of Radiography.
The need for an ACPSEM CPD program was recognized in Recommendation 66 of the Baume Report "The National Body should help ACPSEM to develop a formalized continuing professional development program for medical physicists which should be implemented from 2004 and made mandatory by 2005". The federal government's Department of Health and Ageing has allocated funds to employ a CPD Development Officer from 1 October 2004 in order to achieve this aim.
An email survey of college members in September 2003 showed support for the development of a CPD program (29 of 33 respondents), although many divergent opinions on how it should be implemented.
These guidelines developed by the Working Party reflect the opinions received from ACPSEM members in an email survey of the college members:
1. The CPD program must be relevant to all ACPSEM members including biomedical engineers and physicists working in all disciplines.
ACPSEM CPD presentations
Two different presentations at EPSM 2000 in Newcastle addressed CPD issues:
At the 2003 world conference on Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering in Sydney, Greg Brown presented "Towards a Formalized CPD Program" at WC2003 in Sydney, describing a pathway towards achieving a CPD program for the ACPSEM, based on Greg's experience with setting up the AIR's CPD program.