At the end of the undergraduate course you will receive your MBChB degree, which is a primary medical qualification (PMQ). Holding a PMQ entitles you to a provisional registration with the General Medical Council. 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 excessive number of competitive applications from non-UK graduates.
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.
Medical Licensing Assessment
The GMC has decided to introduce a Medical Licensing Assessment – the MLA - from 2022 to demonstrate that those who obtain registration with a licence to practise medicine in the UK meet a common threshold for safe practice. Applicants should be aware that to obtain 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 MLA will be in two parts: there will be a knowledge test, which will be set and run by the GMC, and an assessment, delivered by medical schools, that will evaluate students’ clinical and professional skills.