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The World Health Professions Regulation Conference (WHPRC) taking place on 19–20 May in Geneva, Switzerland, will explore challenges in professional regulation. These include how to set the right standards; how to ensure safety, quality and compliance within regulation; and how to support health professionals with their lifelong learning. Early-bird registration for the conference ends 15 February.
A diverse group of speakers
The WHPRC brings together speakers from a range of disciplines. It allows participants to gain insight and perspectives from outside their professional background and helps ensure better patient care through best practices in regulatory governance and performance. Speakers at the forefront of professional regulation include:
Prof. Zubin Austin from the Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto, Canada.
He will share his experiences on setting standards for pharmacy practitioners and will explain key features of the work being done to address challenges inherent in regulating health professionals.
Prof. Janet Grant, Director of the Centre for Medical Education in Context, United Kingdom.
She will discuss how to make continuing professional development (CPD) more relevant to professional practice.
Setting the right standards for professional regulation
"Getting the right level of standards in professional regulation is essential to balance public safety and professional respect. It is easy to over regulate and over standardize and therefore strip professionals of their wisdom and judgement. Where standards are applied too strictly, they can inhibit professional innovation and judgement, and demoralize professionals."
Prof. Zubin Austin, Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Toronto
Regulators need to recognize the importance of being flexible and being open to standards evolving as the needs of professions, societies and patients evolve. Regulators also need to develop mechanisms to continuously elicit input and feedback about how well they are doing from diverse stakeholders.
Quality continuing professional development must link to practice
"Most approaches to continuing professional development are overly bureaucratic and fail to connect practice with learning. CPD should arise from practice and the needs that come out of practice. Collecting credits does not encourage a link between practice and educational effort."
Prof. Janet Grant, Centre for Medical Education in Context
At the WHPRC, Prof. Grant will put forward a model of CPD developed in the UK for doctors. She explains how it is essentially based on two doctors talking, having a professional conversation. They sit down together, and the learner doctor says what they would like to learn, why and how they want to learn. They act on that reflection and bring their learning back to their team, either incorporating what they have learned into their practice or not, depending on what they find.
World Health Professions Alliance
The WHPRC is hosted by the World Health Professions Alliance (WHPA). WHPA brings together global organizations representing dentists, nurses, pharmacists, physical therapists, and physicians and speaks for more than 26 million healthcare professionals in more than 130 countries. WHPA works to improve global health and the quality of patient care, and facilitates collaboration among the health professions and major stakeholders. FDI is a member of WHPA.