After graduating from ScotGEM, you will receive your MBChB degree, which is a primary medical qualification (PMQ). Holding a PMQ entitles you to provisional registration with the General Medical Council (GMC), subject only to its acceptance that there are no 'Fitness to Practice' concerns that need consideration. Provisional registration is time-limited to a maximum of three years and 30 days (1125 days in total). After this time period, your provisional registration will normally expire.
Foundation Year 1 programme
Provisionally registered doctors can only practise in approved Foundation Year 1 posts: the law does not allow provisionally registered doctors to undertake any other type of work. To obtain a Foundation Year 1 post, you will need to apply during the final year of your undergraduate course through the UK Foundation Programme Office selection scheme, which allocates these posts to graduates on a competitive basis. So far, all suitably qualified UK graduates have found a place on the Foundation Year 1 programme, but this cannot be guaranteed, for instance if there were to be an increased number of competitive applications.
Successful completion of the Foundation Year 1 programme is normally achieved within 12 months and is marked by the award of a Certificate of Experience. You will then be eligible to apply for full registration with the General Medical Council. You need full registration with a licence to practise for unsupervised medical practice in the NHS or private practice in the UK.
Although this information is currently correct, students need to be aware that regulations in this area may change from time to time. There is some discussion about whether to remove provisional registration for newly qualified doctors. If this happens, then UK graduates will receive full registration as soon as they have successfully completed an MBChB (or equivalent) degree. It is very likely that UK graduates will still need to apply for a training programme similar to the current Foundation Year 1 programme, and that places on this programme may not be guaranteed for every UK graduate.
Medical Licensing Assessment
The GMC is developing a Medical Licensing Assessment (MLA), to be in place in 2022. The MLA will be in two parts:
- a knowledge test which will be set and run by the GMC
- an assessment delivered by medical schools that will evaluate students’ clinical and professional skills.
Applicants should be aware that to obtain GMC registration with a licence to practise, medical students will need to pass both parts of the MLA, pass university finals and demonstrate their ‘fitness to practise’.
The purpose of the assessment is to demonstrate that those who obtain registration with a licence to practise medicine in the UK meet a common threshold for safe practice.
Information about the MLA can be found on the GMC website.