Collaborating with patients and carers to develop a patient survey to support consultant appraisal and revalidation

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There has been increasing interest in methods of assessing patients' experience or satisfaction with their doctor and this is particularly relevant in light of the recent publication of Good Doctors, Safer Patients by the Chief Medical Officer. Methods of assessment that measure what a doctor actually does in real-life practice, rather than what they are competent to do in a simulated environment, are particularly powerful tools that have been under-utilised in the past. While there are many published patient surveys, most address the patient's whole experience of the healthcare episode rather than focusing on the doctor's performance in areas such as interpersonal skills, communication skills and professionalism. Here we describe our experience of developing a patient survey to support consultant appraisal and revalidation, in collaboration with the Royal College of Physicians' Patient and Carer Network.
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