In today’s rapidly evolving professional landscape, the pursuit of continuous growth and development is essential. Professionals must strive to enhance their knowledge, skills, and expertise to stay competitive, stay ahead and adapt to the ever-changing demands of their respective fields. There is no better way to measure this than through the accumulation of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points. CPD points serve as a valuable measure of a professional’s commitment to lifelong learning and demonstrate their dedication to maintaining high standards of competence. Conditions relating to the CPD programme are further required for continued registration and practice.
The inaugural Smart Health Summit running from 1 – 3 June 2023 in Gauteng’, Johannesburg, offers medical professionals the opportunity to earn 11 HPCSA CPD points for the two-day conference.
What Are CPD Points?
CPD points are a quantifiable representation of the learning and development activities undertaken by professionals within their respective fields. These points are awarded for participation in specific activities that ultimately contribute towards professional growth and advancement. CPD programmes are designed to provide structured learning opportunities keeping professionals up to date with the latest industry trends, advancements, and best practices. CPD points are awarded once a personal learning activity, such as a course or seminar, has been completed. 1 CPD point is awarded per hour of active learning that has taken place. The validity of CPD points differs across professional bodies, but many range from one year to three years, and up to five years in some cases.
Why Do CPD Points Count?
The pursuit of CPD points plays a pivotal role in fostering professional growth, adaptability, and lifelong learning. It is, in essence, a mindset. By actively engaging in key activities, one accumulates these points and stays ahead in their field. This, in turn, maintains high standards of competence, allowing them to embrace new opportunities. Whether through attending workshops, seminars, conferences, online courses, or participating in industry-specific events, medical professionals are empowered to unlock their full potential. Here is a breakdown of some of the reasons to embrace a future of continuous growth and success.
- CPD points encourage healthcare practitioners to engage in continuous learning. This enables them to acquire new skills, knowledge, and perspectives. By attending designated programmes, workshops, seminars, and conferences, they can stay abreast of industry changes and adapt to evolving requirements.
- CPD points act as a quality assurance mechanism. It means medics, collectively and individually, adhere to the prescribed standards of competence and professionalism. Accruing CPD points as a result demonstrates a practitioner’s commitment to maintaining and improving skills that keep them competent in their roles.
- A well-trained professional is a hirable professional. CPD points on a résumé or professional profile reflect a proactive approach to professional growth, making candidates more attractive to potential employers.
- CPD events and activities are known for providing excellent networking opportunities and connecting medics to their peers, industry experts, and potential collaborators. This, in turn, opens doors to new opportunities, knowledge sharing, and collaborative ventures.
- It is now becoming the norm for many professions and industries to have regulatory bodies or professional associations, such as the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA), that require members to accumulate a certain number of CPD points within a specific timeframe. Compliance with these requirements maintains industry standards and adherence to ethical practices.
- A professional earning CPD points is one who has taken ownership of their learning journey to pursue topics of personal interest. Engaging in learning activities that are aligned with individual goals and passions also brings a sense of fulfilment and satisfaction.
- Finally, in terms of the legislative authority of section 26 of the Health Professions Act No. 56 of 1974, the maintenance of accumulated CPD points is mandatory for HPCSA members.