COVID-19: Impact on College Activities

This page contains advice and information for members about the impact of COVID-19 on CPD, education and training, events and other College activities.

Education and Training

Guidelines for decision-making related to COVID-19 Crisis

Last updated: Thursday 2 September 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected many facets of the RANZCR's training programs and is expected to continue to do so for some time.

This document sets out the overarching priorities, principles and strategies to guide decision-making on training and accreditation, assessments, examinations and other training activities during the COVID-19 pandemic, and in its aftermath.

The College will regularly review and revise these guidelines, particularly the stipulated timeframes, in line with government advice and the status of the COVID-19 situation in our region. Please find our frequently asked questions (FAQs) for Clinical Radiology and Radiation Oncology.

Our Priorities

In developing this guidance, RANZCR has sought to:

  • Act in the best interests of patient safety, quality of care and the community
  • Protect the wellbeing of trainees and trainers
  • Maintain a balance between the provision of clinical services and the pedagogic objectives of the training experience.

Our Principles 

  1. RANZCR will act to serve the interests of all stakeholders (Fellows, educational affiliates, trainees, international medical graduates (IMGs) and College staff), as well as the jurisdictions and healthcare systems in which they work.
  2. RANZCR will act consistently, fairly and transparently across Faculties and health jurisdictions.
  3. RANZCR will seek to ensure, as far as is practicable, that trainees continue their progress through the training programs at the usual pace.
  4. RANZCR recognises that considerations for clinical service provision may override those of training, and that training and IMG placements will be significantly affected for a period of at least 12 months.
  5. RANZCR recognises that the clinical service provision and training experiences that trainees will have during the COVID-19 pandemic will be different from normal but nonetheless professionally valuable; this departure from normality will be taken into account when evaluating trainees’ progress.

Our Strategies 

  1. RANZCR will suspend all face-to-face educational and training activities until further notice; instead the College is considering alternative methods of educational delivery and the appropriateness of the timing of such activities.
  2. RANZCR will consider alternative methods of examination delivery, while ensuring capacity to deliver and maintain the integrity of the examination process.
  3. RANZCR will suspend all training site accreditation and reaccreditation visits for a period of at least 12 months and facilitate alternative approaches to address urgent accreditation issues as they arise.
  4. RANZCR will be flexible when considering the impacts of changes to the training environment on the ability of trainees to fulfil their training requirements, for a period of at least 12 months
  5. RANZCR will not penalise trainees if they are unable to meet training requirements (such as work-based assessments, experiential training requirements and logbooks) within prescribed timeframes, for a period of at least 12 months. However Trainees must complete all training requirements in order to obtain the Fellowship.
  6. RANZCR has a flexible training program and will continue to be supportive of extended time in training, if required, to help ensure training requirements are fulfilled.
  7. RANZCR recognises that local jurisdictional and personal issues may affect the progress of individual trainees and will therefore manage each trainee’s unique circumstances through its Consideration of Special Circumstances policy. The trainee’s experience and associated impacts will, by this process, be recorded and managed accordingly.
  8. RANZCR suspend all IMG assessments and consider alternative methods of assessment delivery and the appropriateness of the timing of such methods, for a period of at least six months.
  9. RANZCR will extend the timeline for IMGs to complete assessment pathways by up to 12 months, if needed and will manage these circumstances through its Consideration of Special Circumstances policy.
  10. RANZCR will advise all stakeholders of major training decisions with at least three months' notice. These decisions will include the timing and format of examinations, IMG assessments and accreditation processes.
  11. RANZCR will advocate with government where appropriate to minimise adverse impact on trainees' progress and help ensure a sustainable and flexible workforce.

 

Changes to CPD Requirements

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, both the Medical Council of New Zealand (MCNZ) and the Medical Board of Australia (MBA) have acknowledged that that COVID-19 work will impact on the ability of all doctors to maintain CPD requirements in the coming months:

What does this mean for members? 

The College will support members by applying the following reduced CPD program requirements. The reduced requirements are in line with those previously communicated by the MCNZ. The College will work closely with the MBA to ensure members are supported during this period. The College’s current CPD program operates on a triennium basis, with 2020 being the middle year of the 2019-2021 triennium. 

The College will not be conducting its annual compliance audit on CPD for 2020​.

Revised RANZCR CPD Requirement

  • By the end of the 2021 calendar year, RANZCR radiation oncology members are required to have accrued 130 CPD points (normally 180 CPD points)
  • This is based on the RANZCR guideline included in the 2019-2021 CPD Handbooks regarding exemption which details pro rata CPD points are calculated at 5 points per month with a maximum of 50 pro rata CPD points in a calendar year. In this instance, a 50-point exemption will apply
  • There will be no annual requirements for a minimum number of CPD points to be met.

Summary

  • Radiation oncology members will be exempt for 11 months (or equivalent to 50 points)
  • Radiation oncology members need to accrue 130 CPD points by the end of 2021.
  • There are no annual requirements for a minimum number of CPD points to be met in 2020 or 2021
  • For further information see the Radiation Oncology CPD Handbook 2019-2021 

Revised RANZCR CPD Requirement

  • By the end of the 2021 calendar year, RANZCR clinical radiology members are required to have accrued 125 CPD points (normally 180 CPD points). This is based on the RANZCR guideline included in the 2019-2021 CPD Handbooks regarding exemption which details pro rata CPD points are calculated at 5 points per month with a maximum of 60 pro rata CPD points in a calendar year. In this instance, a 55-point exemption will apply (based on 11-month CPD exemption).
  • There will be no annual requirements for a minimum number of CPD points to be met.

Summary

  • Clinical radiology members will be exempt for 11 months (or equivalent to 55 points)
  • Clinical radiology members need to accrue 125 CPD points by the end of 2021.
  • There are no annual requirements for a minimum number of CPD points to be met in 2020 or 2021
  • For further information see the Clinical Radiology CPD Handbook 2019-2021.

Whilst we recognise there is disruption or cancellation of many educational events scheduled in 2021, we encourage members that if you are undertaking any type of CPD activities, you are still able to log these in the learning portal and they will still count toward your triennium total.

Some examples include web-based learning, participation in clinical meetings, teaching, journal reading and research, to name a few.