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New CPD Standards FAQs

Please be aware that the MyRACMA system will be unavailable on Tuesday 2nd April at 07:00 (AEDT) as we will be performing scheduled maintenance. We anticipate a downtime of 30 minutes.

Why do I have to do CPD with RACMA?

Medicine is constantly evolving and, to maintain your skills and expertise, you must continue to grow professionally throughout your career. The college strives to ensure that its members are at the forefront of medical administration and requires all members to undertake the CPD program if they wish to remain part of the college.

In addition, completing a CPD program is a requirement for registration and specialist recognition by both the Medical Council of New Zealand (MCNZ) and the Medical Board of Australia (MBA).

Why are changes happening with the CPD program?

Both the MCNZ and MBA are committed to improving CPD for medical practitioners. This has led to new requirements for registration which include planning for appropriate and high-value CPD through a compulsory professional development plan and placing an emphasis on “active CPD” activities including practice review and the measurement and improvement of outcomes. These changes will be implemented over the next 6 months and are mandatory.

The College’s CPD framework has been changed to meet the requirements of the registering authorities.

What are the changes?

Fellows will be required to complete a minimum of 50 hours of CPD activity, which must be underpinned by cultural safety, health equity and professional and ethical practice. They must nominate a CPD “home(s)” or provider(s) which will certify that they have completed a CPD programs related to their scope of practice.

In Australia the 50 hours includes:

1. A Professional Development Plan (PDP) (which may be counted as a form of reviewing performance and would normally be limited to 5 hours of claimable CPD)

2. a) A minimum of 5 hours of reviewing performance

b) A minimum of 5 hours of measuring outcomes

Categories a. and b. will together provide a minimum of 25 hours of CPD with doctors to decide the most appropriate mix of activities

c) A minimum of 12.5 hours of continuing education

In New Zealand the requirements are similar but with slightly different wording and include:

1. A PDP (which may be counted as reviewing and reflecting on practice and would normally be limited to 5 hours of claimable CPD)

2. An annual conversation with peer, employer or colleague (which may be counted as reviewing and reflecting on practice and would normally be limited to 5 hours of claimable CPD)

3. A mix of activities, with minimum hours prescribed by the program provider (RACMA), across the three categories of:

a) A minimum of 5 hours reviewing and reflecting on practice (previously “peer review” with a minimum of 10 hours)

b) A minimum of 5 hours measuring and improving outcomes (previously “audit” with a minimum of 10 hours)

Categories a. and b. will together provide a minimum of 25 hours of CPD with doctors to decide the most appropriate mix of activities

c) A minimum of 12.5 hours of continuing medical education

Associate Fellows must complete 25 hours of CPD including a PDP. Currently there are no minimum hours for each type of activity. This is currently under review and any changes will be notified prior to the commencement of the reporting cycle.

When will these changes occur?

The MCNZ has stipulated that RACMA should adopt the changes by 1 July 2022 and the MBA has set a deadline for the college to be prepared by 1 January 2023. However, professional development is a continuous process, and the college’s auditing and verification procedures, in both countries, will continue to be based on a calendar year cycle.

Each year, college members must complete their CPD activities by December 31 but have until March 31, the next year, to enter the details in MyRACMA. The records are then audited, and a certificate of completion is issued by June.

What arrangements are in place for the transition to these changes?

The college appreciates that the transition process may be difficult and will provide enhanced assistance to members over the next 12 months.

To assist with the changes:

1. An interim handbook will be published on the college website before 1 July 2022. This will reflect the new requirements for registration and provide CPD resources, many of which have been suggested during member’s consultations. A final version of the handbook will be available after further consultation before 1 January 2023.

2. MyRACMA, the college’s digital platform for recording CPD activities will undergo a major rebuild in three stages:

a) For the remainder of the 2022 reporting cycle, the current build will continue to be used. However, to accommodate, the MCNZ’s enhancement of CPD categories the following method for recording activities should be used after 1 July:


Category 1: Reviewing and Reflecting on Practice Peer Review
Category 2: Measuring and Improving Outcomes Audit
Category 3: Educational Activities Education Activities



  • Self-Directed Education – Any activities that you would normally put in this category should now put under the most relevant of the 3 categories listed above.  See the interim handbook for guidance
  • College Meetings


b) An interim rebuild, in which the types of CPD are reclassified, renamed and with further resources added, will have a soft launch at the College conference in Hobart on 27 September. This will be used as the official CPD platform from 1 January 2023 onwards.

c) A more extensive rebuild with improved resources is planned for 2023-24.

What is a CPD “Home” or provider?

The MBA requires that every doctor must nominate an accredited “home” in which they can complete a CPD program relevant to their specialty. In New Zealand, a similar process requires doctors to nominate a CPD provider. Currently most CPD homes and providers are medical colleges, but it is likely that independent educational institutes may also apply for accreditation.

Doctors with more than one registered specialty or vocational scope of practice are required to complete CPD for each specialty and this may require the nomination of more than one home or provider.

Why do I have to do CPD for another college(s) as well as RACMA?

To be registered as a specialist, you need to complete a relevant CPD program for each of your specialties or vocational scopes of practice.

In addition, each college has distinct CPD requirements, and to maintain your membership you must complete the program of each college.

However, CPD accomplishments can be used for multiple colleges. If you have undertaken CPD activities in leadership, management or other RACMA competencies with another college, then these activities can also be submitted to RACMA. Activities unrelated to medical administration cannot be counted as RACMA CPD.

I am an Associate Fellow of RACMA, why do I need to participate in RACMA CPD?

As well as using CPD as an opportunity to develop your medical administration skills, you must fulfill the CPD requirements to maintain your college membership. Currently this is 20 hours of CPD activity per year including a mandatory professional development plan. The activities must be related to leadership, management or other RACMA competencies. There are currently no mandated hour limits for the various types of CPD, but this is under review.

AFRACMAs with general but no other specialist or vocational scope registration and a practice that is predominately medical administration may nominate RACMA as their home or provider but are required to undertake the same CPD as Fellows.

How do I record my CPD activities in MyRACMA?

Your CPD activities must be recorded in your MyRACMA account which can be accessed through the college website via computer, mobile phone or tablet. Instructions on loading new activities are available on the webpage.


The CPD cycle is based on a calendar year from January to 31 December. To ensure that you remember all your activities, it is recommended that they are entered throughout the year as they are undertaken but you have until March 31 the next year to finalise your entries.


Please click HERE for a step by step guide.

Do I need to upload my evidence? Some of what I do is very confidential.

Neither MCNZ nor MBA require mandatory uploading of CPD evidence, but the evidence must be available if you are audited by the college or registration body. We have a capability for members to upload their CPD evidence to MyRACMA, so that it is easy to extract if required for an audit.

Should members choose not to attach their evidence we ask them to accurately describe their CPD activity or submit a reflective statement so that the relevant State CPD Co-Ordinator can assess the validity of their submission.

How can a Medical Administrator possibly review performance and measure outcomes?

Easily! CPD activities suitable for doctors who do not have direct patient contact include:

Educational activities Reviewing performance Measuring outcomes
Reading, viewing or listening to educational material


Professional Development Plan Quality improvement project
Study towards formal qualifications Workplace performance appraisal; Collegial Visit; Annual conversation Assessing incident reports
Executive coaching and mentoring Medical services survey or review Leading, analysing, writing reports on healthcare outcomes
Lectures, forums, panels Multi-source feedback Auditing aspects of individual practice or employer outcomes
Small group sessions Participating in clinical governance or QA committees Analysing and reflecting on local, national or international health outcomes
Courses and workshops Accrediting/auditing practices, hospitals, training sites

The revised RACMA CPD Handbook, which will be available on the college website after 1 July, contains many suggestions which will meet the requirements of the college and registration boards.

What is a PDP and why is it compulsory?

Your annual Professional Development Plan is the cornerstone of your continuing professional development. It is a mandatory requirement for college CPD certification, MCNZ recertification and MBA registration. It may also be counted as an activity in the reviewing and reflecting on practice (NZ) or reviewing performance (Aust.) category of CPD and will be credited with the time taken to develop, usually up to a maximum of 5 hours annually.

Creating a PDP at the beginning of the CPD cycle serves as a guide to stimulate targeted learning and professional development over the next 12 months. The process should not in itself be a major undertaking, but it should be a ‘road map’ guiding the selection of relevant activities. Having a PDP ensures that your CPD is focused on the activities that will provide most benefit to you, based on your identified development needs. The PDP is most effective when it incorporates specific goals that are achievable, of high benefit and appropriate to your work setting.

Your PDP has 4 stages: THINK, PLAN, DO and REVIEW

Developing a PDP begins with a reflection on all the facets of your practice as a medical administrator, including your strengths, weaknesses, and particular interests. From this reflection, you can construct a plan of proposed activities which is targeted at enhancing your abilities, addressing issues, and taking advantage of opportunities for practice improvement. The plan includes your expected outcomes from each activity and how these achievements will be measured.

The PDP is a dynamic document and should be reviewed, throughout the year, to reappraise your progress and record successes and disappointments. These reviews may result in the PDP being revised to accommodate your changing learning requirements and outcomes. The PDP is not finalised until the end of the CPD cycle when a final review allows you to reflect on your progress and help develop your PDP for the next year.

The PDP can be recorded in many forms and the college handbook has a template which may be helpful.

What are the annual conversation and collegial practice visit?

An annual conversation with a peer, employer or colleague is a mandatory activity for New Zealand fellows and is an excellent form of practice review.

For many college members this conversation will be part of an annual performance review with their employer and should include:

  • constructive feedback and sharing of best practice.
  • an opportunity to explore your satisfaction in your current role
  • the setting of performance targets
  • reflections on your development needs,
  • your goals for learning and professional activities for the next year.
  • a review of self-care and health and wellbeing issues
  • longer-term career aspirations

The college CPD handbook contains a conversation template for members who do not have an employer-based performance review

A collegial practice visit (or Regular Practice Review) is a more structured and formal form review by a senior peer or peers, of a doctor’s practice in their usual setting.

The process may take several weeks to complete and includes a face to face or virtual visit to the practice. During the visit, the reviewer(s) and practitioner discuss, in a formative and constructive manner, the practitioner’s practice and identify any strengths and opportunities for improvement.  After reflecting on the visit, the reviewer(s) provide and discuss feedback with the practitioner including suggestions for further professional development.

The college CPD handbook has a guide and templates to assist with the collegial visit process.

What is inappropriate to submit as a CPD activity?
  • Entries from a work diary for a month
  • Participation in routine work-related activities, which are not related to any of the CPD types.
  • Activities unrelated to medical administration competencies