What is CPD?

Continuing Professional Development is a lifelong learning process.

CPD is a term used to describe the various activities you undertake to maintain and develop existing knowledge and skills following qualification and entry into professional practice. These activities must be continued throughout your career as a herbalist.

The public take it for granted that professionals will keep their knowledge and skills up to date. As a professional herbalist you are responsible for maintaining competence in all areas of your practice.

CPD enables you to provide better healthcare services for your patients through enhancing your knowledge and skills and providing opportunities to take your practice forward.

CPD has developed political significance. It has increased in importance in every profession but particularly in the field of medicine. CPD has been identified in both Irish and UK government policy as a prerequisite for the professional recognition of herbalists.

CORU, the regulator for healthcare professionals in Ireland, recommend that CPD should be transparent and open as well as:

  • High quality
  • Up to date
  • Relevant to practice

All IRH Full members must engage in a minimum of 100 CPD points per annum to maintain full professional membership.

CPD does not apply to new members joining IRH for the first time, such as newly qualified graduates. Previous members or Associate members who have discontinued practice but wish to start up again are required to have 50 CPD points in order to renew full membership – Returning to Practice.

We see CPD as being about capturing useful experiences, identifying areas of practice which could be improved and assessing the practical benefits of what you have learned. What you identify as an area for development, how you achieve it and demonstrate that you have achieved it is up to you. Here are some examples for those intending to become members to give you an idea

  • Attending conferences/seminars/weekend workshops
  • Attending HerbFeast  (Community of Irish Herbalists)
  • Publishing/editing/reviewing articles in journals or on websites.
  • Projects with other IRH members or healthcare professionals
  • IRH Physic Garden volunteering
  • Member of a committee involving other healthcare professionals
  • Reading books, journals, articles related to herbal practice
  • Developing marketing and/or business skills (not marketing activities themselves)
  • Developing computer literacy skills
  • Membership of a special interest group
  • Undertaking research
  • Reflective practice/journalling

The IRH CPD policy E-book is available to members after registration and can be found in the Resources section. This guide to CPD contains detailed information such as:

  • CPD standards
  • What does and does not count as CPD
  • CPD for educators, academics, researchers
  • Reflective practice
  • Creating and maintaining your CPD portfolio
  • Personal Development Plans