According to a 72 year old oncology surgeon, if a clinician becomes difficult to deal with, forgets to show up in the OR, misspeaks when writing orders, has complications, it is time to intervene and review regardless of their age. This review and intervention is known as competency testing for clinicians.

According to many medical professionals, more old age doctors in practice are a threat to organizations and patients with memory damaging their critical thinking skills, their manual dexterity and sharp mindedness.

According to an American House of Delegates, it is imperative to systematically approach the issue with formal and appropriate guidelines for methods and timings for competency testing, for the older clinicians who wish to retain their staff privileges.

As clinicians age, they tend to rely more on process based on gist and recognition rather than the more controlled processes. These can potentially result in diagnostic errors during complex and evolving clinical issues that could prove fatal.

However, there is no stating that younger doctors cannot fail this test because they most certainly can. The likelihood of such errors however, increases with age. If formal guidelines are laid down, they may head off a notice for mandatory retirement ages.

Who Requires a Competency Assessment?

The following individuals require a competency assessment:

  • Technical consultant
  • Clinical consultant
  • Technical supervisors
  • General supervisors
  • Testing personnel
  • Those who undertake the responsibility of performing  testing on patient specimens and etc.