Approval Process

This page covers all the stages of the Practice Approval and Re-Approval visits and goes onto cover Trainer Visit Reports and Lay Visitors.

Practice Re-Approval Visits

Trainers and Practices are visited every 3 years.  In preparation for the visit, Trainers are asked to submit the following:-

1 – (Re)Application Form

The application form for GP Trainers has been designed to take into consideration the PMETB guidelines for GP Trainers and you will see a column at the side of each area which contains a number. This is the PMETB domain number this area refers to. The following are the numbers and their description.

  • 1 – Patient Safety
  • 2 – Quality Management, Review and Evaluation
  • 3 – Equality, Diversity and Opportunity
  • 4 – Recruitment, Selection and Appointment
  • 5 – Delivery of Approved Curriculum inc. Assessment
  • 6 – Support and Development of Trainees, Trainers and Local Faculty
  • 7 – Management of Education and Training
  • 8 – Educational Resources and Capacity
  • 9 – Outcomes
  • GI – General Information

If you would like further information regarding these PMETB Domains please go to their website.

2 – Partnership Agreement

Please complete this document, ensuring it is signed by all relevant members of staff.

NB: As we require these documents with original signatures, scanned versions sent by email are not acceptable. These must be returned by post.

3 – An Equality & Diversity Training Certificate

Equality & Diversity training can be completed using an online resource.

Please see the Policy Document issued by Health Education Wessex which details which modules are acceptable.

BMJ Learning ( provides a good module. Alternatively Bournemouth University offers an online learning module for Dorset GPs. If you would like to do the Bournemouth University online module, please contact the Dorset GP Centre on 01202 963019 or via email.

NB: This Certificate needs to have been completed within 3 years of your visit date. If you have previously undertaken Equality & Diversity training more than 3 years prior to your visit date, you will need to complete a new online training module.

4 – A Recent Consultation Video

Please ensure you have prepared a recent consultation on video of yourself and your Trainee (if applicable) which demonstrates your teaching. You will be asked to show this to the Lead Visitor on the day of your Approval Visit.

5 – Attendance at Another Practice Approval Visit

Where possible, Trainers are also expected to attend a Re-Approval Visit at another Practice, preferably within the preceding 6 months before their own Approval Visit is due.  Their current GPR should attend, forming part of the GPR’s “special leave” entitlement.  For further guidance on Approval Visits, please see the relevant documents below:

Back to the top.

Trainer Visit Report

Upon completion of an Approval Visit, a Visit Report is completed. It is designed to offer guidance and a framework for the training Practice Visit and is subsequently used in the (re)approval process by the Wessex Deanery. The form has recently been updated and now forms part of the application form.

Back to the top.

Other Useful Documents

Back to the top.

Lay Visitors

The Role of the Lay Visitor

The objective is to provide public scrutiny to the provision of GP training in Dorset. Lay members are able, as individuals outside the medical profession, to observe, comment and report upon the training provided in Dorset. They attend practice visits and recruitment events. The lay visitor role should increase public confidence in the robust recruitment process and the detailed training and assessment which takes place in Dorset. There is a public perception of the medical profession perhaps being less transparent than other professions and the role of the lay visitor should belie that perception through the inspection process.

Wessex Deanery Lay Visitors

The Dorset GP Team currently has six lay members.  Andrew Smeatham has a background in secondary school education.  Kate Osborne, has a background in law, finance and more recently with the probation service, and Ruth Cargill has a background of practice management.  We also have Alice Bonasio, Tom Atkinson and John Wolfe.  Lay members accompany lead visitors and trainers on practice approval and re-approval visits.

Kate Osborne – I was appointed as a Lay Visitor for the Wessex Deanery at the start of 2010.  My main career is working for Dorset County Council on their Looked After Children Education team.  I am a Law graduate who worked in finance until the birth of my second daughter who has cerebral palsy.  As a result, I have subsequently worked part-time, including as a Board Member for the Dorset Probation Service, working as a lay member and chairing their Audit Committee for four years.  My exposure to the health service has therefore been extensive.  My youngest daughter is now eight and has regular appointments and treatment with a wide range of health professionals, especially our GP.  I am passionate about the quality of the GP service provided in Dorset, and by direct extension, the training provided to the GP trainees.

Back to the top.