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Information about mini-PAT Assessments

Fri, 23/07/2010 - 12:12 — James Teasdale

What is a mini-PAT assessment?

The mini-Peer Assessment Tool (mini-PAT) provides feedback from a range of co-workers across the domains of Good Medical Practice. Using Portfolio Online these can be mapped to the core objectives of the curriculum. PMETB and the GMC have identified peer ratings as suitable for postgraduate assessment and re-validation evidence.

Should I have been nominated as an assessor?

Trainees are asked to nominate colleagues with whom they currently work. This includes administrative staff. Any questions that you cannot answer can be skipped by clicking on the unable to comment (U/C) button. If you do not wish to complete this assessment at all, please email support@training.rcpsych.ac.uk so we can remove you from the assessor nomination form.Please note: patients cannot act as assessors.

If I state concerns about a trainee’s fitness to practice will my identity be revealed and will I be contacted regarding this?

When producing feedback, comments made by assessors are reproduced verbatim and anonymised so they are not attributable to any one assessor. As part of our quality assurance processes we report all anonymised health and probity concerns to project leads at the Royal College of Psychiatrists. These will be passed to the relevant Deanery and cascaded as necessary. Your comments will be de-anonymised in order that you can be approached by the Deanery or employing Trust for further details if necessary. Your identity will never be revealed by us to the participant about whom you made the comments.

How many mini-PATs should I do in a training year?

Trainees are required to do 2 mini-PATs in one training year. These will typically be spaced out over the training period, for example one in the first 6 months and a second in the second 6 months. It is not possible to backdate mini-PAT assessments.

When can I do a mini-PAT?

Trainees can do a mini-PAT assessment at any point during a training year, however a trainee needs to ensure assessors have time to complete the form. The time allocated to complete a mini-PAT form is 4 weeks.

What is a mini-PAT self form?

The mini-PAT self form is a self appraisal form that should be completed for every mini-PAT. It can be done as soon as the trainee's has created a mini-PAT and has to be completed by the assessor deadline. Trainees receive e-mails reminding them to complete the form.

Who should trainees use as assessors?

You must nominate at least 6 colleagues with whom you currently work and may not nominate more than 18 assessors.

Trainees must seek the assessor's permission as well as their preferred email address prior to nominating them.
Nominated assessors should include:

  • At least 2 senior medical staff (CT 1 / ST 2-3: 1 consultant and 1 SpR or ST 4-6 would suffice, ST 4-6: 2 consultants required)
  • At least 2 non-medical clinical staff (e.g. nurses, social workers, occupational therapists and psychologists)
  • Not more than 2 trainees at your level (CT 1 / ST 2-3 level or ST 4-6 level)
  • You may include administrative staff
  • You may not include patients

Do not nominate an assessor more than once.
Nominating an assessor more than once can compromise the confidentiality of the Mini-PAT assessment, and could cause the entire assessment to be invalidated. When you speak to your assessors before you nominate them, you should check with them which email address you should use to nominate them, as some people may be registered using their personal email address.

If there is an error in one of your nominations then please contact us immediately (support@training.rcpsych.ac.uk) and we will correct it for you promptly.

Why do Trainees have to nominate at least 6 assessors for the mini-PAT?

Research suggests that feedback from 6 assessors is enough to represent an accurate picture of performance for the majority of competent doctors. We recommend you nominate 8-12 assessors to ensure that at least 6 assessors respond. There is an upper limit to the number of assessors you nominate of 18.

While the college recommends a minimum of 6 responses, this is subject to interpretation / change by particular deaneries. We would recommend that you always check with your deanery as well to see how many responses they require as a minimum for valid feedback.

We cannot provide information on which assessors have or have not completed and submitted a multi-source feedback assessment, only the total number of assessors who have responded.

Portfolio Online is owned by the College as well as all of the data collected through the assessment process. Some aspects of the system are monitored and supported by a third party IT company who conform to the College's policies on privacy and data protection.

When can I nominate an assessor?

Assessors can be nominated as soon as a trainee has created a mini-PAT.

What should trainees do if they receive negative comments on their mini-PAT assessment form?

Comments cannot be removed from your record. Portfolio Online will not reveal the identity of any assessor to a participant. If you wish to discuss the comments on your feedback, please do so with your educational supervisor. If your supervisor also has concerns, then they can contact a member of the team via the 'Contact Us' option in the navigation bar towards the left of this page.

Can a trainee do more than 2 mini-PATs in one training year?

We can enter a trainee into a third round of mini-PAT provided this has been previously agreed with their educational supervisor. The trainee's supervisor must then email us (support@training.rcpsych.ac.uk) requesting the round. Once the email is received, we can create a third round.

© 2008 Royal College of Psychiatrists