The Savvy IMG

Requirements for registration with the GMC

Get to grips with the fundamentals of coming to the UK as an international medical graduate with our comprehensive easy-to-understand guide. In this post we discuss the requirements you’ll need to register with the GMC including PLAB and IELTS.

Table of Contents

Photo of piles of paperwork for GMC registration

Updated: January 17, 2021

The General Medical Council (GMC) is the medical authority in the UK. You need to be registered with the GMC and have a license to practise in order to work as a UK doctor. There are no exceptions.

The whole process of getting registered can be easy and quick, or difficult and long depending on how well you prepare your documents.

In this post I’ll walk you through all the requirements you’ll need to submit for GMC registration so your experience will be as smooth as possible. The exact combination of documents will be different for each doctor depending on individual circumstances but we go over the important requirements here.

GMC requirements

Primary Medical Qualification (PMQ)

Your PMQ is your medical degree. The GMC will need to be satisfied that your PMQ is from a legitimate reputable university.

So is your university reputable according to the GMC? This is easy to check. It should be included on list A or B, and NOT on List C or D.

If your university is not on any of these lists, you should contact the GMC via email for further advice.

Your university can appear on more than one list:

  • If your school is on list C, even if it is also on list A, then I’m afraid this is the end of your journey until the GMC removes your school from list C. You can email the GMC, but the chances of acceptance are low.
  • If your school is on both list A and D, then you may still have a chance. Graduates from schools on the “grey-list” are assessed on a case-by-case basis. Again, it’s best to email the GMC for guidance.

ECFMG and EPIC verification

Once you’ve established that you have an acceptable PMQ, you will need to have your certificate or diploma verified by a GMC-trusted third party. That’s where the ECFMG and EPIC come in; they are US-based organisations specialising in verifying credentials.

The verification process can take time, so the earlier you do this the better. An ideal time to do this is between after you’ve taken PLAB 1.

The step-by-step instructions to do this can be found here:

Please take note that only your certificate needs to be verified. Transcripts do not need to be verified or submitted for GMC registration.

You can use your previous ECFMG certification for GMC registration. All you have to do is create an EPIC account then make a request to ECFMG to send the report to the GMC.

Proof of clinical knowledge and skills

On top of your PMQ with ECFMG certification, you will need to demonstrate that you reach the standard level of medical knowledge and skills expected of UK doctors who have just completed internship.

This can be achieved through 6 main routes.

  1.  PLAB
  2. Acceptable overseas registration exam
  3. Relevant European qualification (REQ)
  4. Acceptable postgraduate qualification
  5. Sponsorship

1. PLAB (UKMLA from 2024)

PLAB stands for the Professional Linguistic and Assessments Board. The exam has 2 components: PLAB 1 which is a written test, and PLAB 2 which is a practical test.

PLAB is specifically for IMGs who qualify outside the EU. UK graduates and EU graduates do not need to sit PLAB.

Fortunately with the right preparation, PLAB is a very manageable exam and there are good pass rates which are increasing year on year.

Related: What you need to know about PLAB

2. Acceptable overseas registration exam

As of January 12, 2021, you may be exempt from PLAB if you have previously passed any of the following licensing exams:

  • USMLE (Step 1, Step 2 CK & Step 2 CS)
  • AMC (MCQ Examination & Clinical Examination) or
  • MCCQE (Part I & II in English)

This is only applicable if you passed the exams before a certain date:

    • USMLE: On or before 13 March 2020
    • AMC: On or before 5 March 2020
    • MCCQE:  On or before 27 October 2020

You must also have passed the exam in no more than four attempts. If you sat the exam more than four times before passing, you will not be eligible to use this route.

Also, if you have taken and failed PLAB part 1 or 2 after you passed one of the above exams, then you are not eligible for this route.

Read more about this on the GMC website here

3. Relevant European qualification (REQ)

As of January 1, 2021, IMGs who completed their Primary Medical Qualification (medical school) or are on the specialist register in the EU may be exempt from PLAB. This is now applicable even if you are not an EU national. EU nationals are no longer exempt from PLAB if they went to a medical school outside the EU. 

However, if your REQ is over 2 years old, you should be be able to show that you have been working since graduation. If you have not practiced for 60% of the time since graduation (or over the last five years, if you graduated more than five years ago) in a full time role, plus a minimum of 6 months in the last 12 months, then the GMC may require more information from you or they may require you to sit PLAB.

To check if you have a relevant European qualification, check this list on the GMC website.

4. Acceptable postgraduate qualification (PGQ)

The GMC has a list of postgraduate qualifications that they accept for full registration. This means you can bypass PLAB by having one of the qualification on the list.

This list includes UK postgraduate qualifications such as MRCP and MRCS, but also includes some overseas qualifications so it’s worth checking if yours is on the list. 

You can find the list here.

  • If you have a qualification on this list, then well done! You have already demonstrated your skills and knowledge for full registration. You do not need to take PLAB. All you need to do is have your certificate or diploma verified through ECFMG along with your PMQ.
  • If you have a qualification that is not on this list, you could potentially write to the UK medical Royal College of your specialty to ask whether they would consider your qualification as equivalent to theirs. If your qualification is accepted, then great. If not, you can either obtain a new qualification that is accepted, or you can sit PLAB, or you can obtain sponsorship (see below).
  • If do not have a qualification on this list, you could gain one by sitting the relevant exam eg. MRCP or MRCS, or you can sit PLAB, or you can gain sponsorship (see below).

Related: How to decide between PLAB and MRCP/MRCS

5. Sponsorship

It is possible to gain GMC registration without sitting PLAB or having an accepted PGQ. This is achieved through sponsorship. Some institutions provide sponsorship for GMC registration allowing you to bypass PLAB and PGQ. This is the list of GMC approved sponsors.

For more information about how you can gain sponsorship, please check the official websites and contact them directly. It’s always best to contact the sponsors directly for more information because rules change frequently.

Medical Training Initiative (MTI)

MTI is a type of sponsorship that allows doctors to work in the UK for a maximum of 2 years. Although your visa to work in the UK is only for 2 years, the GMC registration you gain is permanent and will not be revoked after 2 years.

MTI is a great option to gain GMC registration for those who do not plan to migrate to the UK permanently. If you’re interested in short-term training in the UK, you can read more about the options here.

Suggested: How to find cheap short-term accommodation in the UK

6. CESR (Article 14)/CEGPR

If you are already a specialist overseas, then you may be able to gain direct registration as a specialties and be recognised immediately as a UK Consultant. This involves compiling a set of documents demonstrating that you have the equivalent training and experience of a doctor who has completed specialty training (residency in the UK). This is known as the CESR route.

If you are already a practising general/family medicine practitioner, then again, you may be able to do the same and be immediately recognised as a UK GP. This is the CEGPR route

It is a tedious process, and usually unsuccessful for those who do not have any UK experience, but it is a possibility and some IMGs have succeed with this.

Please note that is not enough to submit a CV of your work history for a successful application. The GMC typically expects 800-1,000 pages of documents detailing your training and experience.

You can read more about it in this article:

English proficiency

There are different ways to prove to the GMC that you can communicate in English as a medical professional. Which evidence you use depends on whether you are taking the PLAB route or the PGQ/sponsorhip route.

PLAB route

There are 3 options:

1. IELTS Academic version

  • To pass you need an overall score of 7.5 and a minimum score of 7.0 in each of the different sections (reading, writing, listening, speaking) all in the same test.

2. OET Medicine

  • You’ll need to score at least a ‘B’ grade in all sections in the same test to pass GMC requirements.

Related: IELTS vs OET

3. Your PMQ

  • To use your PMQ as evidence of English it has to meet certain criteria:
    1. The PMQ was taught and examined solely in English, and
    2. At least 75% of your communication with patients, their relatives, and colleagues, was also in English.
  • You cannot use this route in any of the following circumstances:
    1. Your university is on this list.
    2. You have failed IELTS or OET in the past.
    3. Your medical school is not willing to produce a certificate confirming that they fulfil the English requirements.
    4.  It has been more than 2 years since you passed your final exam and you don’t meet the additional criteria (see below).
  • Even if you meet all the criteria, the GMC still holds the right to reject your PMQ as proof of English proficiency, particularly if you studied in a country where English is not the first and native language.

According to the GMC, you can prove you’ve maintained English skills if you’ve been employed or you’ve studied a postgraduate course in a country where English is the first and native language.

You’ll need to submit a reference from your employer, tutor or lecturer. The reference must cover at least three months full-time study or employment within the last two years. You can download the reference form and read more about it here.

If you can’t meet this requirement, then you need to retake IELTS or OET.

According to the GMC, you can prove you’ve maintained English skills if you’ve been employed in a country where English is the first and native language.

You will need references from all your employers for the past 2 years. You can download the reference form and read more about this here.

If you can’t meet this requirement, then you need to take IELTS or OET.

Ascension, Australia, Bermuda, British Antarctic Territory (BAT), British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), Canada, Falkland Islands, Gibralta, Guernsey, Guyana (formerly British Guiana), Ireland, Isle of Man, Jersey, New Zealand, Pitcairn, Singapore, South Africa, Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia on Cyprus (CBA’s), South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, St Helena, Tristan da Cunha, United Kingdom, United States of America, US Virgin Islands.

Caribbean Islands: Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, Bahamas, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Grenadines, Jamaica, Montserrat, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands


PGQ or Sponsorship route

There are 3 additional ways to prove your English proficiency if you are going through the PGQ route or the sponsorship route as long as you have not previously failed IELTS or OET.

  1. You’ve worked as a doctor in an English speaking country.
    • This is an option if your PMQ was not taught in English but you have worked as a doctor in a country where English is the first and native language for the past 2 years.
  2. You have a UK job offer.
    • If you already have a job offer in the UK and you have fulfilled your future employer’s own requirements for English then this is an option. However, most employers will require you to take an English test such as IELTS or OET.
  3. You passed an English test elsewhere.
    • You can use this option if you have passed the English test for registration in a country where English is the first and native language. So for example, you passed the test for registration in Australia. This has to be within the last 2 years.

Proof of internship or equivalent experience

Provisional registration

If you are applying for provisional registration, then you can skip the requirement for internship. Keep in mind that with provisional registration, you can only apply to a formal FY1 training post through the UK Foundation Programme. You will not be eligible for any other type of job as a doctor, not even a non-training FY1 position.


Full registration through the PLAB route

If you’re applying for full registration through the PLAB route, the GMC will want to verify that you have had clinical-based experience and training equivalent to the first year of the UK Foundation Programme AKA Foundation Year 1 or FY1.

This can done through one of 2 ways:

  1. An internship programme of at least 12 months duration or
  2. Continuous postgraduate medical practice for at least 2 straight years.

While postgraduate work should obviously have taken place after graduation, internship can be either in your final year of medical school or the year right after graduation.

Both types need to have taken place at a public hospital under supervision. That means if you worked as a doctor seeing patients on your own in a private clinic or doing home visits, then this will not count.

There are also requirements for how much time was spent in medical and surgical rotations.

 Formal internship (12-18 months long)Formal internship (longer than 18 months)2 years postgraduate medical practice
Minimum time in medicine 3 months6 months3 continuous months
Minimum time in surgery 3 months6 months3 continuous months

You will need a certificate or letter from the hospital you completed your internship or postgraduate experience at. The letter must contain the dates and specialties of all your clinical rotations.

Please read this article for more details about internship:

No. Clerkship refers to the clinical rotations undertaken during medical school. It is a basic GMC requirement of an acceptable medical degree (source). It is not considered the same as FY1 or internship.

FY1 prepares doctors for independent practise. At the end of it, doctors gain full registration. Clerkship or medical school clinical rotations do not result in full registration or a medical license.

The equivalent of FY1 is internship or a house job.

Be careful of labelling clerkship or clinical rotations as equivalent to FY1 in your CV or job application. You may be accused of inflating your experience which can turn into a serious probity issue with the GMC.

Full registration through the PGQ or Sponsorship route

In paragraph 6 of the GMC guidance for internship, it states that “applicants applying through the PGQ or Sponsorship routes are considered to have demonstrated the necessary experience for full registration.”

This means that your internship does not need to meet the same criteria as the PLAB route. If the GMC officer handling your case is giving you a hard time about internship even if you’re applying through the PGQ or Sponsorship route, do refer them to the guidance linked above.

5 year activity record

The GMC want to know what you’ve been up to after your medical degree for the past 5 years only. You do not do provide a record of activities for anything more than 5 years ago. The sorts of activities you can include in your record are: medical work, non-medical work, clinical attachments, unemployment, maternity leave, study leave, vacation, and career breaks.

You only need employer references if you’ve done medical work without being registered, or any non-medical work.

Registration through the sponsorship route requires that you have been actively practising medicine in the last 5 years. You do not have to be continuously practising for the whole 5 years but you should have been active for 3 years in total, including the most recent 12 months. This is not a requirement if aim to gain GMC registration via PLAB or an acceptable postgraduate qualification such as MRCP, MRCS, MRCOG etc. 

Certificate of Good Standing

If you’ve been working as a doctor overseas anytime in the past 5 years, then the GMC expects that you are registered as a doctor with the relevant medical authority in order to legally practise medicine there. You will need to obtain a Certificate of Good Standing (CGS) from that medical authority. 

  • If you are registered or hold a license with more than one medical authority, you need a CGS from each and every one you’ve been registered with over the last 5 years. 
  • If you have been registered somewhere in the past but haven’t been registered with them for more than 5 years, then you don’t need a CGS from them.
  • If you are registered somewhere in the last 5 years but have never actually worked there, you still need a CGS.
  • If there is no medical authority where you’ve worked, you’ll need to contact the GMC for further advice.
  • If you have been working without any registration or official license to practise because it is not required to work as a doctor for any reason, you’ll need to contact the GMC about your situation for further advice.
  • If you are not registered with any medical authority because you have not yet worked as a doctor, then you do not need to submit a Certificate of Good Standing

Some countries have a medical council or medical board for every region; check which ones the GMC accepts certificates from in this database.


Once your application is approved, you will have to come to the UK to have your passport verified for ID checks.  For those going through the PLAB route, the ID can be checked on the day of the PLAB 2 exam to avoid an additional journey to the UK.


These tend to be strictly followed although sometimes the GMC may grant some leniency if you contact them directly. If you do not fall within the set time limits and the GMC does not grant any leniency, then you will have to repeat some of the steps so do make sure you adhere to rules!

  • Your registration must be approved within 2 years of passing any English test.
  • PLAB 1 must be taken within 2 years of passing an English test, but if you wait this long you will have to repeat the English test for GMC registration.
  • PLAB 2 must be taken within 2 years of passing PLAB 1.
  • Your application for either provisional or full registration must be approved within 2 years of passing PLAB 2.
  • Your application for full registration must be approved within 3 years of passing a postgraduate qualification, if it has been more than 3 years then you will need to show that you have been working and kept updated since then.

Take note that these time limits are for when your registration must be approved. This means you do not have up to 2 or 3 years to apply. If you apply too close to the time limit, your registration may not be approved in time.

  • Any references from employers are only valid for 3 months.
  • A Certificate of Good Standing is only valid for 3 months.

Once you submit all your documents to the GMC your application will stay open for 3 months. During that time the GMC may request for missing documents. Each time they ask you will have only 2 weeks to produce the missing paperwork. This is usually not enough time for a lot of things!

So make sure you give everything they ask for the first time. 

If your application is not approved within 3 months then you will have to submit a new application and you might even need to repeat some of the requirements as they might be outdated by then.


In conclusion, the requirements you need to submit depend on which route you take. Which route to take will depend on your level of experience and training, and your ideal career pathway. PLAB is certainly the easiest starting point for the majority of IMGs who are quite early on in their careers. It is also the most flexible in terms of job and training opportunities. 

Whatever you decide, I recommend creating an online GMC account as early as possible and start completing your requirements systematically. Once all requirements are complete, it’s time to hit submit!

Further resources

Find out what requirements you need for your individual circumstances with this GMC tool. I’ve completed the first 2 questions for you and you just need to complete the rest.

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152 Responses

  1. Hello, I am planning to get a provisional GMC registration. Regarding the Certificate of good standing, if I am not registered with any medical authority because I have not yet worked as a doctor, I do not need to submit a Certificate of Good Standing. But do I need to prepare any additional documents required to prove this?

    I appreciate your help!

    1. Hi Sophia, if you have never worked as a doctor and you are not registered with a medical authority, then you do not need to provide a Certificate of Good Standing. In terms of the other documents for provisional registration, you don’t need to do an internship so you don’t need to provide an internship certificate. Just keep in mind that you can only apply for formal FY1 training through the UK Foundation Programme and you will not be eligible for any other type of job as a doctor, not even a non-training FY1 position. Learn more at these two links.

  2. Hi, I am doing my MBBS from Pakistan (5 years degree-about to finish) but I didn’t do any house job/internship after that. I have British passport. I know I have to pass Plab 1 and Plab 2 to register but do I need to have internship/clinical experience before applying for PLAB. Is it possible to do internship in UK as my kids are in UK? Or I need to do internship in Pakistan

  3. Thanks for the detailed article.

    I am planning for a gmc registration via MRCPCH. I have completed all other documents. I have a doubt regarding CGS.
    I did my MBBS from Nepal and currently work here with registration. I did my MD in India 3 years ago without getting registered with any state or central council. So, I wont be able to provide CGS for those years.
    Is it worth applying now or should I wait for 2 years? I am very confused?

    Kindly Reply

    1. Hi Manyx, as far as I know that will pose a problem but I’m not sure about the details. I’m certain there are many IMGs who have similar experience, you may find it useful to ask IMGs who have gone through the same thing in one of the IMG Facebook groups. You can find the links to relevant Facebook groups here on our Useful Links page. We wish you all the best!

  4. Hello.

    I’ve always been hearing about and seeing GMC asking for proof of this ‘provisional registration’ during internship. In the Philippines, we do the PGI-ship before getting our boards and getting the license. Does GMC ask for this evidence and how can we avail of this from PRC? I’ve been exchanging emails with PRC and we’re just going in circles – they can’t seem to get what letter I’m trying to request of them even after showing examples of letters by other countries’ councils.

    1. Hi there, sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. You can get a letter from your place of internship or from the organisation that oversees internships to confirm that the license in the Philippines can only be obtained after passing the board exams, which can only be taken after completing internship, and that there is no formal provisional license from the PRC. But ask in the Filipino IMG FB group. Many Filipino doctors are now working in the UK so definitely ask in the FB group as well for recent experience. Good luck!

  5. Thanks for your very useful information. I passed MRCOG for four years which is more than three years before registration. I’d like to know how to show my recent medical experiences to GMC ie, recommendation letter from my supervisor or log book

    1. Hi there, it’s usually just by listing your employment history or work experience. If they require any further documents, the GMC will let you know. All the best!

  6. Hi, I am a final year medical student doing my 12 month internship in Bulgaria.
    I understand that we need to do 12 weeks of surgery with in this internship. But here in Bulgaria we were only given 10 weeks in the General surgery department. I am about to do 3 weeks in the ENT department, does this come under surgery? or should I go for another 3 weeks in the general surgery department?

    Also, does OBGYN come under surgery? Because i have heard mixed answers.

  7. I have question, I didn’t achieve the required grades in my ielts exam, i got 6 in the writing section, 6.5 in the reading section, 7.5 in the listening, and 8.5 in the speaking, overall I got a 7, plus CEFR level is C1. I am waiting for a letter from my university which is not on GMC’s list, hopefully by using my primary medical qualification awarded from Bulgaria ‘Medical university of Sofia’, will gmc accept this letter regarding the examinations, teachings and practical’s were in English, plus my diploma, I have a European diploma supplement also I am British national. Will they grant me license a to practice, as everything is subjective anyway.

    1. Hi there, to be honest it’s unlikely that they’ll accept your PMQ because English is not the native language in Bulgaria, but it’s possible if your school can certify that you interacted with patients in English 75% of the time. It’s likely that they ask you to sit another test. If you’re struggling with the test we definitely recommend Swoosh English. They are officially recommended by OET for the medicine test and they also do IELTS. You can check out their free Pass First Time video mini-series before you enrol.

      Sign up to the free OET mini-series here

      Sign up to the free IELTS mini-series here

      All the best!

  8. HI
    I am GMC REGISTERED SINCE 2018 and I am currently working as an overseas doctor, so I stopped my license and kept my registration in the GMC .
    IS there a time limit for this process? some of my friend told it is only for 5 years then I need to redo my English language test??
    Do you have any idea about this as I couldn’t find it in the GMC website??
    thanks alot

    1. Hi there, I’m not too sure about getting the license back. For an issue like this we recommend contacting the GMC directly for advice. Their email address is and the phone number is +44161 923 6602. They are open Monday to Friday 8 am–5.30 pm and 9 am–5 pm on Saturday. You can also send them a message on FB messenger, they usually reply within a day or 2.
      All the best!

  9. Can i get a job offer without GMC registration? I am IMG and have master and doctorate degree from Egypt, My certificates are EPIC verified..last 7 years i am consultant medicine and assistant professor of clinical medicine in qatar ..i want to move and work in UK ..what is your advice? Thanks

    1. Hi there, yes you can but you will need GMC registration before you can start work. If you are unable to obtain GMC registration in time to start the job, then the offer can be withdrawn and we have seen this happen. You can get GMC registration through PLAB, MRCP or you can ask the hospital or RCP if they can assist you with sponsorship. Not all hospitals have this option so it’s safest to get start with GMC registration. Best of luck!

  10. Hi, I have worked for an insurance company in a non-clinical role for 4 year but prior to this I have 10 years of clinical practice including 2 years of internship. Will this affect my registration if I go the PLAB route?

  11. Hi Nick,

    I would like to ask about GMC registration and license to practice in the UK. I had my primary undergraduate degree done in UK in 2009 and continued my medical career in my home country in Malaysia. I also had completed my postgraduate specialty training in Emergency Medicine in 2018.

    If I were to apply for GMC and license to practice in order to apply job in UK, is there any other documents/requirement that I need to fulfill?

    1. Hi there, you’d probably just need to submit a copy of your PMQ without EPIC verification + 4,5,6,7 in the infographic above. I’d recommend contacting the GMC directly for their official advice. Their email address is and the phone number is +44161 923 6602. They are open Monday to Friday 8 am–5.30 pm and 9 am–5 pm on Saturday. You can also send them a message on FB messenger, they usually reply within a day or 2. Best of luck!

  12. Hi,

    I would just like to ask, if I have taken and passed the first 2 parts of MRCPCH can I apply for GMC registration and begin working in the UK while finishing the next 2 parts? Also while obtaining CREST

  13. Hey, I cleared the Plab 2 and applied for registration in November end but GMC has requested a gen1 form to be filled by one of my employer, they are not willing to fill the form for me, what are my options now ? I’m really distraught and heart broken for what is happening. Any assistance or guidance from you will be hilly beneficial.

    1. So sorry to hear about this, it’s really frustrating when something like this happens. We don’t have any experience with this ourselves. You may find it useful to ask IMGs who have recent experience with that in one of the IMG Facebook groups. You can find the links to relevant Facebook groups here on our Useful Links page. Hope it all works out, all the best!

  14. Hi Nick, I am from India but I completed my mbbs from China. Duration of course is 5years theory + 1 year internship . During my internship, I completed 6 month internship from parent institution and remaining 6 months internship done in India. Is doing internship in this way acceptable for applying plab exam ? Or should I do my entire internship from same hospital inorder to apply plab exam ? @Nick tan

    1. Hi there, internship is not a requirement for PLAB so you can apply for PLAB right away. It might be a problem when you apply for GMC registration though. You may find it useful to ask IMGs who have recent experience with that in one of the IMG Facebook groups. You can find the links to relevant Facebook groups here on our Useful Links page.

  15. Hello, Dr. Nick Tan,

    For Filipino IMGs, should the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) mail the GMC the Certificate of Good Standing? Or can we upload the Certificate on the website of GMC ourselves?

    1. Hi there! You need to obtain a copy from the PRC yourself and include in your application for GMC registration.

  16. Hi Nick,
    I am a medical graduate from india. I graduated from one state in India and joined for Post-graduate training in another state. Due to some personal reasons I quit the training after one year. Now I am registered with the medical council of 2states in india but not with the one where I did training. So while submitting cgs, do I need to submit all three cgs or is one enough? Now even if I do apply for registration and get a cgs from that state my training would appear to have been before the date of registration. Will that be a problem.please help

    1. Hi Anne, you should submit a CGS from every council you’ve been registered with in the past 5 years. I would recommend contacting the GMC directly for official guidance. Hope it all works out!

  17. Hi,

    I am currently a final-year medical student at an EU university and will be graduating in July 2022. From what I’ve understood, we are now exempt from taking the PLAB exam and we are allowed to apply directly into FY2 but I have heard from a lot of graduates that they had trouble jumping right into the system.

    So I was wondering if my best option is to apply to FY1 non-training job and what should my timeline look like in terms of the GMC registration and taking the IELTS? Also, since I have never had any clinical attachments in the UK how realistic is it to get a job in the UK?

    Thank you in advance!

    1. Hi there! We’ve heard the same from a lot of EU graduates since many are able to get full GMC registration without an actual internship equivalent. We definitely recommend doing a clinical attachment or elective in the UK to help you adjust to the system. A non-training FY1 job would be ideal, or a non-training FY2/SHO job in a supportive department that allows you to work as an FY1 for the first few months. You can take IELTS at any time now, then apply for GMC registration in July after you graduate, and start applying for jobs. Good luck!

  18. Señor Nick, saludos. Hola, me gradué de médico general hace 24 años, he trabajado en forma continua. Hace 3 años complete un programa de especialización en pediatría, así que los últimos años los he trabajado como pediatra. Soy colombiano pero vivo y trabajo en Argentina, tengo 48 años. Que ruta me recomiendas? Es la edad un problema? Gracias , quedo atento.

    Mr. Nick, greetings. Hello, I graduated as a general practitioner 24 years ago, I have worked continuously. 3 years ago I completed a specialization program in pediatrics, so the last few years I have worked as a pediatrician. I am Colombian but I live and work in Argentina, I am 48 years old. What route do you recommend? Is age a problem? Thank you, I stay tuned

    1. Hola! Age is not a factor when applying for GMC registration or jobs. You can do PLAB or MRCPCH plus all the other requirements listed here and get a job in paediatrics. Please see our paediatrics guide under specialty guides. Good luck!

  19. Hi there, i completed my house job in Pakistan, general surgery 6 months, a months gap for maternity leave and then 6 months in medical ICU completed in septmeber 2014, do you think this will be acceptable to GMC?

  20. Hello,
    With regards to my activity for last 5 years, what kind of documents will I need to produce regarding my employment?

    1. Hi, if you’ve only been working as a doctor and it was covered by your certificate of good standing, they don’t ask for anything else. They definitely won’t be asking for assessments!

      For any work not covered by the above ie. non-medical work or medical work not covered by registration, then the GMC may ask for a GEN 1 form.

  21. Hi, Thanks a lot for this page it’s been so helpful, I wonder if there is a way to ask something specifically. I’m full of doubts because I’m not sure when to do the PLAB. I already checked and my university and internship are okay for GMC registration, I’m interested in applying for the FY2 stand-alone . But here in Chile we do the internship before graduation (we get a license in medicine in 5th year) and then 2 years of internship to get the full degree. So in my case, I would have to wait until I get my degree to take the PLAB?? or I could do it during my internship?? Pls answer and thanks a lot

    1. Hi there,

      One of requirements to sit PLAB is that you have qualified from medical school. If your internship is a pre-requisite to qualify then you may need to complete your pre-graduate internship before you can book PLAB.

      We also asked the GMC this and they said “yes, you must complete your pre-graduate internship”, however we have come across many IMGs who have completed PLAB during a pre-graduate internship so it looks like it’s possible but we cannot provide any reassurances. Please contact the GMC if you require further clarification.

  22. Hello Guys again,
    Just one question again, last but not the least.
    What type of UK job is actually accepted to fulfil English language requirement for GMC registration via the postgrad qualification Route? Any employment or NHS based solely?


    1. Hi Patrick! It needs to be work as a doctor. The GMC website states “You must have worked in a medical capacity for at least the past two years, in a country where English is the first and native language.” They have a list of countries they consider to have English as a first and native language. You won’t be able to use the UK because you can’t work as a doctor without GMC registration, but if you’ve worked as a doctor elsewhere where English as a first and native language, then you can use that.

  23. Hello guys, I’m Patrick, from London. Newly grad (IMG).
    Due to some rather unexpected delays in my medical school, i’m running late with submitting some documents including IELTS/OET for F1 and probably F2 to start in august 2022.
    Starter, as an IMG Brit, I definitely think I should take IELTS/OET and PLAB cos GMC doesn’t care much about your Cit’ anymore but where you actually graduated, if I’m not wrong. Thus trying to circumvent basically.
    However, having completed a pre-grad fully supervised 12 months internship (cumulative 5.5 months in 3 Surgery departments and 6.5 months in medicine), i’m making plans to go for MRCS to apply for full registration via postgrad qualification route, hoping my internship pattern will be accepted.
    To maintain a good and unquestionable 5 years activity record, Is there any job one can do now in the NHS without GMC registration, if you don’t mind me asking please,
    Just want to do everything succinctly.


    I am wary of the situation, actually.

    1. Hi there! If the gap is quite short then it doesn’t really become an issue for GMC registration. IMGs have gotten GMC registration with gaps of more than 5 years so if you have a gap of 1-2 years, then it’s not likely to be an issue. However if you want to work in the NHS without GMC registration, there are plenty of options. You can look at jobs like healthcare assistant, COVID vaccinator, phlebotomist, medical lab assistant etc. All the best!

  24. Hello Mr Tan,
    Thank you for the detailed information regarding GMC registration. I would like to ask on behalf of my father- He completed MRCP part 2 in 2003. He meets almost all the criteria. But given that one has to get the registration and license to practice within 3 years of post-graduation, is he still eligible to apply for GMC now?

    1. Hi there, he would still need to pass PACES in order to use the MRCP route to registration. If he has only passed Part 1 and 2 then I’m afraid his MRCP is incomplete and it can’t be used for GMC registration in any circumstance. If he has already passed PACES, then he may be able to use MRCP for GMC registration if he has a continuous work history. Best to enquire directly with the GMC to get an official response. All the best to him!

  25. If I have recently done a pre graduate internship and I’ve not been registered with any medical council, I don’t need a CGS. But do I need to get the employer reference form filled during my internship as an alternative to CGS?

    1. Hi there! You don’t need an alternative to a CGS. You just need proof of your internship with the dates of all your rotations (this is required whether or not you have a CGS). If the GMC asks for it later on, you may need a letter from your hospital stating that registration is not required for a pre-grad internship.

  26. Hi Nick
    Thank you so much for this informative blog. I find this process so confusing. I am a British citizen but graduated from a medical school outside of the UK. I have ECFMG certification (since 2016) and recently completed MRCP part 1 and part 2. I’m not able to do PACES until next year. Am I eligible for GMC registration? Of note, I have not been in clinical practice for one (1) year. Prior to that I was doing a fellowship at UCSF in the US. I appreciate any help you may be able to provide. Thank you.

    1. Hi Sam! From what we understand of GMC registration via historical pass in USMLE, is that you need to demonstrate you have been in active medical practice.

      On the GMC website it says, “If your pass in the clinical skills component of an acceptable overseas registration exam is more than two years old, to be eligible for this application, you will need to have carried out medical practice for three out of the last five years, including at least six out of the most recent 12 months before you submit your application. If your pass is over two years old and you haven’t completed this pattern of medical practice you will not be eligible for this application.”

      If you have been out of clinical practise the over the past year, then it appears you would not be eligible. Best to contact the GMC directly for further guidance. Hope it all works out!

  27. Hi Dr. Nick
    thank you soo much for Your great explanation.
    I got confused about ECFMG; this organization only certfies us afteer clearing usmle,
    U mean that after passing plab still we must ECFMG verified.

  28. Hi! Just a question. I read in the guidelines for the foundation year that they only consider IELTS to be valid if i sat for it on the 3rd of august or onward (which is two years before the exact day the fy1 actually starts there, not the application). However, i did mine and got all grades needed on July 20th. Will they refuse it and consider it unvalid by that for only 14 days difference? Do I really have to retake it in a date starting 3rd of August? Thank you

  29. Hi Nick,
    I am applying for GMC provisional registration as part of UKFPO and for the 5 last years I ve been working as HCA, for one year as HCA in hospital, would it be considered as non-medical work? Many thanks,

    1. Hi there, we’re not entirely sure to be honest. Best to ask the GMC directly for clarification. Please update us on what they say!

  30. Hello Nick,
    Thank you so much for putting up this blog I find it very helpful and informative. I am in the process of GMC registration and I have one dilemma with regards to the consultant report form. At the consultant’s declaration part there is a an official stamp portion. The consultants I’ve worked here in Canada dont use any official stamps. Do you know what could be an alternative for that?

    1. Hi there! You can put the hospital or clinic stamp, or as long as the consultant provides their registration and contact details it should be fine. Please confirm with the GMC!

  31. Dear Tan,
    Thank you for the great effort, information, and answers to all queries.
    I am an orthopedic surgeon who did my medical education and residency in Pakistan. Currently, I am in the USA for a clinical fellowship. I passed the MRCS 2019. I am applying now for the GMC registration. I don’t have any plans for the ILETS/OET. I will submit a letter from my current supervisor in the USA. The issue is I am here in the USA under his direct supervision for the last 19 months only. Before coming here we were working on research papers. Do you think this will be considered by the GMC or they will be very strict about the complete 24 months of employment in the USA instead of the 19 months? Before that, I was a resident of orthopedic Pakistan. Will that overlap of experience creates an issue? Details of dates below:
    . Orthopedic residency Pakistan Jan2015-Dec2019
    . English letter from my employer in USA june2019-june2021 (these 2 years considering 5 months research work with him while in Pakistan and 19 months in the USA in clinical fellowship). You can notice there is an overlap in both experiences.
    Should I submit this employer letter (2 years reference) as it’s to GMC? Or should I just submit it as a (19 monthl employment letter)?

    Pardon my giant wall of a message.
    O. Hasan

    1. Hi there! The GMC are usually quite strict with these things so they will probably want 24 months in the US. But having said that, they take every application into consideration individually so they may consider your situation. The best thing is to give them a ring and discuss the situation. They can advise you further. Hope it works out!

  32. Hello,
    I am an ECFMG(USMLE) certified doctor working as a house officer in Nepal. I do not have a post graduate qualification. Do I need to sit for PLAB/MRCP/MRCS before applying for GMC registration?

  33. Hi Nick,
    thank you for the article! I am currently struggling to get CGS from where I am registered–I haven’t been able to get any response from the authorities and am not currently in the country. Do you know if there are alternatives we can provide the GMC with in stead of the CGS?

    Thank you!

    1. I’m not aware of any I’m afraid, it’s best to contact the GMC directly for advice. You may also be able to get some advice from one of the IMG groups on FB.

  34. Hi.
    I am short of 18 days for the 6 months in recent 12 months criteria for GMC registration. Otherwise I have been working for 7 yrs prior to that. How will this impact GMCs decision for my registration. I have no PLAB at all.

    1. Hi there, did you graduate from a medical school in the EU? If so then it may be an issue. If the GMC do not accept that gap then they will most likely ask you to sit PLAB. Best to ask them directly for advice. Hope it works out!

  35. Hi,
    I booked plab2 nearly 1.5 years after plab1 due to covid. My question is if I pass plab2 and then apply for GMC registration after 2 or 3 years, will they accept it or should I apply soon after plab2 (I intend to do my post-graduation in my home country and then go to the UK later, that’s why the delay)

    1. PLAB 2 is only valid for 2 years so I would just apply for GMC registration right away. You don’t need to come to the UK as soon as you have GMC registration.

  36. Hi,

    I am an International Medical Graduate. I am ECFMG certified.

    I would like to know if PLAB is exempted for me.

    Secondly, I have been graduated from english speaking foreign medical school and have been working in USA for 2 years. So, based on this will my IELTS be exempted ?

    Thanks. Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

    Best regards

    1. Hi there, sounds like you should be exempt from PLAB and IELTS. Best to check with the GMC directly. Hope it all works out!

  37. Dear Nick,
    I am an orthopedic surgeon from India, I had passed my MRCS part A some 8 years back, now I want to go to UK but when I enquired about writing part B MRCS they said I cannot write it also they said I cannot even rewrite the MRCS part A again…
    Kindly tell me what is the possible route to get GMC registration

  38. Hi there, i am interested in radiology training. I have part1 frcr and cleared PLAB exams, am i eligible to apply for st1/ct1 position.

    1. Hi there, as long as you don’t have more than 18 months radiology experience then you should be eligible. Please see our radiology guide for the eligibility requirements for ST1

      It’s a competitive specialty so please start working on your CV early. These are our general tips:

  39. Hello Dr. Tan,
    I just wanted to confirm if the Certificate of Good Standing needs to be valid just at the time of applying for registration or till the time approval is granted? For example, if I apply for registration in June, can I submit a CGS that was issued in April?

    1. Hi there! As far as we know, it should be valid at the time of applying for registration. Please double check with the GMC directly!

  40. Hi, thank you for so much helpful information! I have a quick question about the EPIC verification; would it be too early if I do the verification now, and then it takes me a few years to pass PLAB and actually apply for GMC registration??

    I’m leaving my country in a bit and want to finish up as much steps as I can beforehand. Thanks!

    1. Hi there! Verification doesn’t expire so that should be fine. It’s great that you’re thinking ahead!

  41. Hi, a huge thanks for all the helpful guidance!!
    One question: is there a time limit for EPIC verification? For example, would it be too early if I do the EPIC verification now, and then it takes a few years till I register for GMC?

    I’m thinking of relocating to the UK to do research work while preparing for the PLAB and GMC registration. I thought I’d finish any steps I can (ie. EPIC verification) while still in my country. Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi there, not as far as we’re aware. It should always be valid. But you can verify by contact the GMC directly just to be sure.

  42. Good day Dr. Nick!

    I would like to ask if the letter or certificate of internship with all the details of our rotations only good for 3 months as well?

    Thank you very much!

    1. Hi there! I don’t think so, it should be valid indefinitely since your internship is not going to change status once you complete it. But please check with the GMC directly!

  43. I am now pediatric consultant working in UAE with the following points
    1-Graduated from medical school, Damascus University-Syria on 2000
    2- Residency program training in pediatric for 4 years in King Hussein medical center -Amman-Jordan
    3- Jordan Board certified in General Paediatrics since 2008
    4-ECFMG certification valid indefinitely 
    5- USMLE Step 1 passed on 2002..USMLE step2 passed on 2001..USMLE CSA passed on 2004
    6- I passed FOP/TAS  and passed AKP 
    7-I am preparing for IELTS academic exams 

    My question is : Am I eligible to register in GMC based on the above qualification to work in UK hospitals if I passed the English proficiency test ?

    Please I need your help 

    1. Hi there, if you have been working continuously since passing USMLE then you may be able to get GMC registration with it. It’s best to contact the GMC directly for their advice. Best of luck!

  44. Hi,
    Thanks for the post. If one has been out of school for up to 10 years and the last 5 years only includes few mo months of clinical attachment and non medical work like being an Anatomy physiology tutor, how does that affect the chance of getting full registration and license and job? Thanks

    1. Provided you pass PLAB you should be ok, we have seen IMGs with 10 years of clinical gap and no relevant work experience get GMC registration. But as I’m not a GMC officer I can’t say for sure. You may find it useful to ask IMGs who have a similar background =in one of the IMG Facebook groups. You can find the links to relevant Facebook groups here on our Useful Links page. Best of luck!

  45. Good day, doctors!

    Will medschool years be accepted for the 5 year count for the activity record?
    This is for those who are fresh from passing the PLE (Physician Licensure Exam) in the Philippines.

  46. HI Dr Nick!
    I’m currently preparing my documents and for the exams so I’m starting off with IELTS. I would just like to ask on what kind of IELTS exam to take on? Should it be British IELTS? Academic or General?

    Thank you!

  47. I have applied for GMC registration. I am from India and have worked in different states but registered with only my home state. So GMC is considering them as medical work without registry. Does someone have any experience in handling this problem? I would really appreciate some help.

    1. Hi there, unfortunately we’re unable to advise about this but certainly there are IMGs who have had this problem. Please ask in one of the IMG FB groups. We hope you find your answer!

  48. Hello,

    I’m a non-EU national who recently graduated from an EU medical school. I just received an email from GMC few days ago saying that people who hold European primary medical qualification like me no longer are required to take PLAB exams for GMC registration.
    “This is because your PMQ is eligible to be treated as a ‘relevant European qualification’ (REQ). From January we will be able to accept an REQ as evidence of knowledge and skills instead of taking the PLAB test.”
    I am waiting for their reply to confirm if indeed people like me are exempt from PLAB exams from now on.

  49. Hi, my university is on the ” grey list”. Can anyone tell me about the criteria they have for the applicants or any way to make my application appealing to the admin officers?

    1. Hi there, we have not seen any criteria for this but several IMGs have gone through this. You will find more help on this by asking in one of the IMG FB groups. You can also contact the GMC directly for up to date advice. Best of luck!

  50. Hi there,
    I am am IMG preparing for PLAB exam. I am working as a clinical research associate for the past 3 years. Will this be taken as a gap from clinical practise? And will be able to get a full GMC registration after this gap?
    Kindly advice,thankyou.

    1. Hi, it shouldn’t be a barrier to full registration. You may find it helpful to ask other IMGs who’ve had similar experiences in one of the FB IMG groups.

  51. Hi sir hope you are fine. My university meets criteria of GMC registration students are eligible for plab exams but there is an issue of our school with ECFMG as they don’t sponsor it will it affect my journey because EPIC verification is service of ECFMG. I checked EPIC website they say we should just make sure organization you are applying ( GMC ) your school meets it’s requirements our university meets its requirements. Waiting for your response

  52. Hi,

    I am a UK IMG. I have just gotten my MD. I transferred from one caribbean medical school to another before clinicals, to do Clinical rotations and electives within the UK. I wanted to join UKFPO. I have been totally devastated to find out that I am coming up short on some clock hours. My PMQ is currently unacceptable by the GMC. I was wondering how to proceed and what options I have to getting additional clock hours?

    Kind Regards

    1. Hi there, sorry to hear that, must have been a big shock. Unfortunately we are not familiar with this problem or how it can be dealt with. You may need to go back to your medical school and request further rotations to increase the hours. We recommend joining one of the IMG groups on FB to see if anyone has had recent experience with that and find out how it was handled. Relevant Facebook groups are listed on our Useful Links page. Best of luck, hope it works out!

  53. Hello!

    Im an argentinian doctor and I finished my general surgery training and plástic surgery speciality ( 2 especialities) in Argentina but I have been working as a general doctor (without speciality ) in Spain for the last 6 years,
    I have IRISH PASSPORT, so how this apply in my case. Do i have to consider myself as IMG who have to take the PLAB?
    Can I work as a general doctor whitout speciality to get a salary while prepare to get a surgical training in UK.
    Is it possible to get a surgery training after a long break? Beside that im 43 years old
    What would you think will be the best pathway in my case?
    Thank you very much for all the help you provide .

    1. Hi Cecelia!
      To answer your questions:
      1. You’re most likely exempt from PLAB. Please contact the GMC directly to confirm. However you will not be exempt from IELTS/OET.
      2. Generally no, all jobs are in a specific specialty. The most general job you could probably apply for is in an Urgent Care centre.
      3. It depends on what surgical specialty you want to pursue, some will deem you overqualified for training eg. General Surgery
      4. CESR-CP or CESR depending on eligibility.
      Please see our surgical guides here:

      Hope that helps. Best of luck!

  54. Hi, I have been trying to register for a GMC reference number via GMC online platform, but it keeps taking me back where it says “Find your route”.
    Kindly help pls

  55. Hi Nick,
    Do you know if Anatomy Demonstrator/Lecturer is considered as medical or non-medical work? I mean do I need to add an Employer Reference Form for it?

    1. Hi, since a lecturer is not seeing or managing patients it is considered non-medical as far as I know and you will need an Employer reference form. You can contact the GMC to confirm. Best of luck!

  56. Good day …
    This is me Dr. A/rahman , Sudanese living in Saudi Arabia , healthcare provider ( general & emergency ) medicine practitioner
    having the experience of more than ” 20 ” years career.
    I will be so glad if you guide me on how to get engaged or join the UK market for overseas GPs doctors…
    I am determined to make use of my vast experience in the UK.
    Is there fast tract way to join the UK-NHS as GP-ER practitioner activist ?
    Please to contact me on: +966 -538483878 or +966578825141 ( both on WhatsApp) and call….thanks

    1. Hi there, the requirements to work in the UK are essentially the same as anyone else. If you need further guidance, please see the RCGP website and contact them for advice on coming to the UK as a GP. Best of luck!

  57. Hi
    I had 2 years (24months continuously) internship programme just after graduation and getting medical licence. It contained 2 months general surgery in the first year and 1 month obsterics and gynecology in the second year. I did 3 months surgery in total but they were not continuously. This is because our hospital programme did not allow 1 year doctor work in obsterics and gynecology department. No single gap during the internship and after internship, I had 10 years more experienced in medicine in my home country without any gap. I cannot take internship in my home country to cover 3 months surgery and I do not think I can get fy1 job because I have too much experience. What should I do.. I am worried.

    1. Hi, I don’t see that as being a huge problem. You can ask other IMGs in the FB groups if they’ve had a similar situation and what the outcome was for an idea. Best of luck!

  58. Hi, Dr. Nick!

    As you’ve probably heard, medical internship has been cancelled in the Philippines, but online alternative learning modules were set-up (I’m from PGH) in order to bridge this dilemma. I’m just wondering if you may have any idea regarding its impact on internship validation by the GMC?

    1. Hi there, since this is all new, we have no idea yet how the GMC is going to handle this, but they are usually lenient with circumstances outside of your control. For eg, even UK medical students did not complete their final year of medical school or take their final exams this year but they will be starting internship next week as planned. Best to contact the GMC directly for advice. Please let us know what they say!

  59. Hi Nick,

    I am an IMG but an UK citizen. I wanted to apply for my provisional GMC number now but I am scheduled to finish on 21st August 2020. Can i apply for the GMC number before I complete my degree? i just want to get the GMC provisional number in time for the eligibility window.

    Thank You

    1. Hi there, you do not need provisional registration or a GMC number in time for the eligibility window.

  60. Hi, should ECFMG and EPIC verification be done before PLAB1 or it can be verified after someone has takeb PLAB1?

  61. Hi

    I received my GMC registration through the sponsorship route and I am already accepted to complete a 1 year fellowship in a London Hospital. Is it possible to stay in the UK after my fellowship ends and get a job somewhere else with this route? Or my registration will only work for this fellowship?

    1. Hi there, yes. You’ll need to apply for another job. If you have a Tier 5 visa for your fellowship, then you’ll need to leave the country and apply for Tier 2 before you can reenter. GMC registration will not be revoked after fellowship.

  62. Hi Dr. Nick,

    In the immediate 12 months of application, I have taken 15 weeks of employed, paid vacation leave.

    Have I lost my chances of being reistered?


    1. No, that’s not an issue at all, unless that was during internship. And even then, as long as you have an explanation and documentation if asked for, then it shouldn’t be a problem. Best of luck!

  63. Hi Nick, does it make sense to sit PLAB after graduation >10 years without medical practice, i.e. any chance for registration? I took the research route after medical school.

    1. Hi there, that decision is really down to you and what your goals in life are. If you want to practise as a doctor in the UK, then you’ll need to sit PLAB. There are lots of doctors who have succeeded with PLAB even after long career gaps like yours.

  64. Hi I am board certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine and practiced in the United States for 9 years after completion- only US citizenship. But now we are moving to the UK. Do you know if registration is possible after a long career break (>5 years)? If not, what route would be possible if any. I thought if I took the PLABs and then even entered a new training speciality that that might work. Any thoughts? Thank you.

    1. Hi Anne, yes you can still get GMC registration after a long-career break. There are IMGs on the FB groups who have managed to gain registration with career breaks of 9-10 years.

  65. Hi Nick! I graduated from China in 2017 and i’m originally from Indonesia. Neither do i have license from China nor from Indonesia. Will i still have a chance to get a full registration? Is a license or a registration in the country of origin or study country is needed?

    1. Hi Michelle, you only need the license if you have ever worked in that country as a doctor. If you’ve done internship, you will usually need to show evidence of a license. But if a license is not required to work as an intern in that country, then this needs to be explained to the GMC and evidence should be provided.

  66. Hi Sir

    I am an ecfmg certified abim certified doctor. I am a us citizen now and dd my med school in india and internal medicine rersidency in usa. I am working in usa last 5 years and am unsure how to register with gmc-i just want a basic registration as gp so that i can work locums in uk ( always wanted to work in uk but never had a chance)
    i have registred myself with epic of ecfmg so my creds are ready to go-but the gmc website is a merry go round and i have no clue how to apply

    please guide

    1. Dear James, thanks for your message! The process and requirements would be the same as for any other IMG. You’ll need to open a GMC account here and submit all the requirements as listed above to gain full registration. This will allow you to work as a locum in the UK. Hope that helps!

  67. Hello Nick,
    I am still in the early stages of my preparation(will take ielts ukvi academic in november,2019). I would like to know if it would be wise to get my PMQ verified by ECFMG now. If no ,at what step do you think it would be advisable to get my PMQ verified?

    Thank you

    1. Hi Akshay, it’s great that you’re planning ahead! I don’t see any problem with that. Verification is permanent so you can open your GMC online account once you have passed your final exams and get your PMQ verified once you have the certificate. Verification can take time so the earlier you get it done, the less you have to worry about!

  68. Hi,
    I would like to know if Certificate of Experience from Ireland (12 months Internship) is equivalent to UK Foundation Y1 and Y2….and is recognised by GMC for full registration and as postgraduates entrance requirement in UK.

    Thank you.

    1. Hi, please contact the GMC about this for an official answer. I would think it is acceptable as an equivalent to FY1 but not FY2, since FY2 is meant to be one year post-internship work.

  69. Hello Nick, I graduated from a university in Ukraine which is under the GMC acceptable institutions. However, I did my first year in another university in Ukraine which may be acceptable to the GMC. I have passed PLAB2 and I have been issued the PMQ1 enquiry form to fill out and provide a list of documents. The problem I have is that my awarding body which is acceptable to the GMC will not provide me with those documents without a letter from the GMC.
    And the GMC in turn claims they don’t give letters to institutions. I have transcripts from both institutions and a letter from previous university stating why I left confirming it on my transcript, that I indeed, did not fail my courses.
    Please can you advice me on how to go about this predicament.
    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Thank you very much for your time.

    1. Hi, sorry I don’t have any experience with this. It may be best to ask in one of the Facebook groups if anyone has faced this issue. Best of luck!

  70. I had taken 4 months break during my internship to study usmle step 1 (i passed and i have evidence which is my score report with date) is this break can be problem?

    i’m also about to finish my 3 year family medicine residency in Turkey now.Is completing 3 year family medicine residency give me advantage to gain gmc full registration?

    Thank you Dr.Nick

    1. Hi, if you have documentation about taking the exam that it may be accepted. But I cannot guarantee this 100%. Only the GMC can make that decision. This article should help.

      Completing residency elsewhere does not come into consideration for GMC registration but can help when applying for jobs. You’ll still need to complete all the requirements as listed above. Best of luck!

  71. I planning to take plab 1 this november and plab 2 early next year (just past IELTS recently). My question is what internship certificate does GMC need? Should I get it from APMC or the hospital I did my internship in? What are the details they need aside from the clinical rotations and the number of months I spent on those rotations? Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi, a hospital letter should suffice. As long as it has the start and finish date of your internship, and each rotation with its duration. You may also need a letter from your hospital confirming that you do not require registration with the PRC in order to work as an intern. I suggest you ask other doctors in the Filipino IMG Facebook group about what they have done recently. Best of luck!

  72. Hello I’m interested in applying as a doctor in the UK via PLAB route. However I did my internship in a private hospital but I underwent residency training in emergency medicine in a public hospital for 4 years. We have rotations in medicine, pedia, surgery, ob, even ophtha and ent but they are not continuous months. Would this be a problem?

    If ever I completed everything can I apply for full registration and if ever they will not consider my residency training, will they automatically give me a provisional license instead? or I should be clear with my intention from the start whether it is full or provisional registration?

    Thank you

    1. Hi James, as long as your internship was part of a nationally recognised internship programme and meets the GMC criteria for an acceptable pattern, it should not be a problem. You should be able to gain FULL registration.

      1. yes, I did my internship in a private hospital under APMC (Association of Philippine Medical Colleges). APMC is the governing body in Philippines with regards to internship. However it is clear in the GMC guidelines that it should be in a public hospital. I’m a bit confused.

        Follow up question. Is it easy to land a job as a doctor once you are already GMC registered under PLAB route?

        1. That is fine. I know several doctors from the Philippines who gained GMC registration after completing internship in a private hospital. All of them got job offers within a month of passing PLAB 2 and are now working in the NHS. If you are flexible and apply widely to different specialties you will get a job. There is still a shortage of 10,000 doctors in the UK.

  73. Dear Dr Nick,I was offered a letter for the degree of Doctor of Medicine (MD) at the University of Chester ,which is a 3 year full-time couse.I had applied through the sponsorship route, as i carry 3 years of postgraduate experience with me,and haven’t yet attempted the PLAB.However my offer letter had the following words in a bracket next to the name of the degree (non-GMC route).So what does non-GMC route mean? How valid/recognised is the degree?.Am i eligible for full registration with the GMC during or post completion of the course?Is it worth doing this course for 30000 pounds annually?Thanks.

    1. Dear Kahan, unfortunately I am not familiar with this term “non-GMC route”. It would be best to clarify with the University and the GMC.

      Regarding whether it’s recognised or valid depends on who you want it to be recognised by and for what purpose. The MD is a research degree and is separate from specialty training (residency), it is not a requirement for entry to specialty training or to become a UK recognised consultant. Whether or not it’s worth is really a personal decision. If you truly want to do research then it may be a good fit for your goals!

  74. Dear Dr. Nick
    During my 12 months internship, I have done 6 months rotation in Medicine (Internal medicine, pediatrics, psychiatry, cardiology, dermatology) & 6 months rotation in OBGYN. Do you have any idea that this 6 months training in OBGYN will be counted in favor of 3-month surgery training?
    I sincerely appreciate your support for IMG and wish you a prosperous and happy life.
    Thanks a lot.

    1. Dear Amena, thanks for your question. As the GMC website does not state whether OBGYN can fully account for the required number of months in surgery, I’m afraid I cannot say for certain. It’s best to contact the GMC directly about these types of queries. Please do let me know their response so I can update the blog and share this with other IMGs!

  75. Hi Dr Diaz, Paediatrics can count as medicine and OBGYN can count as surgery. So far Filipino graduates have not had a problem having their internship accepted.

  76. Hi! I noticed that the minimum for IM and surgery rotation is 3 months. In the Ph, we only did 2 months for each area during our internship. What are our options to supplement our 2 months rotation? Thank you so much. Please continue guiding us through this seemingly impossible path.

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Meet the Team

Hi, we’re Drs Nick & Kimberly Tan, the two IMGs behind The Savvy IMG. We write comprehensive guides, create courses, and provide one-to-one guidance to help other overseas qualified doctors on their journey to the UK.
We have scoured the official guidance to put these posts together, but we can make mistakes! If you spot anything that is incorrect, please get in touch and we’ll put it right.
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