This is a standing committee established jointly between the Royal College of Physicians of London and the Renal Association The joint committee is advisory rather than executive, and has accountability to each of its parent bodies. In terms of accountability to the College, it reports to Council through the Medical Specialties Board.
The Committee is established to ensure that the College is properly briefed on issues in the specialty and the Renal Association is briefed on College plans and policy. It will advise its parent bodies, or other organisations on their behalf, on matters of mutual interest. These will include;
- Workforce and training
- Setting national standards and agreeing joint guidelines and policy statements
- Drawing up specifications for clinical governance in relation to the practice of the specialty
- Developing and extending service review
- Reviewing ethnic minority health issues on an annual basis
- Identifying ethical issues on an annual basis
- Continuing professional development for the specialist, including general medicine if necessary
- Advice to College or other Working Parties
- Any other specific matter of particular relevance to the specialty
In dealing with these issues the Committee will restrict its advice to the context of England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The contribution of any Scottish representative on the committee is welcomed, but the Scottish Colleges are not involved in joint ownership or sending items of business direct to the committee.
The Committee may liaise with other organisations as appropriate to share or obtain advice. However the Committee, or any of its members, may not make any public statement or approve any published materials in its own name or that of its parent bodies, except with their approval.
The above are direct statements from the formal remit. In practice, the Royal College has over 20 specialty committees and is therefore able to bring greater influence through common actions on important issues.
Guidelines for chronic kidney disease - an initiative jointly with the RCGP to develop management and referral guidelines to ensure appropriate and timely referral of those patients most likely to benefit from specialist management while ensuring improved management of cardiovascular/ progression risk factors in all patients with renal disease in primary and secondary care. The group was chaired by Dr Charlie Tomson. See www.renal.org/ckd and www.renal.org/
Quality Outcomes Framework (QoF) submissions - a new basis for the General Medical Services contract from 2005, under which GPs are paid, offered incentives for meeting a number of quality targets. The JSC put forward a number of proposals for the inclusion in the 2006 revision, including the creation of a new domain, CKD, with four new targets, plus additions to the BP and CKD domainsSeveral of these were accepted. Further work will be needed in the future. More information about primary care contracting and the GMS contract.
Good medical practice for renal physicians - drafted a specialty-specific section in "Good Medical Practice for Physicians", an RCP document modelled on the GMC document "Good Medical Practice".
Drafting guidance to commissioners on purchasing renal services (Dr Paul Stevens).
“Consultant physicians working with patients” - the renal section in the current (4th edition) of this RCP publication was drafted by Dr John Bradley.
Workforce planning - including the planned expansion of SpR numbers to ensure that by 2010 we have somewhere near adequate numbers of consultant nephrologists to manage the expanding population of patients with ESRF. See also the Training page.
Lectures and Conferences - The Committee also gives advice to the RCP on College Lecturers and Conferences.