The Foundation Programme
FAQs

01 general


  1. What is the Foundation Programme?
  2. Who is responsible for delivering/overseeing the programme?
  3. What are postgraduate deaneries?
  4. What are foundation schools?
  5. How do I apply for less than full-time training?
  6. If I have any pending investigations into my fitness to practise, is there any action I need to take?
  7. What is the Malta Foundation School?

02 Application Process


  1. How do I apply to the Foundation Programme?
  2. Where can I find more information about the national application process?
  3. What is a unit of application (UoA)?
  4. How is my application scored?
  5. What is the Educational Performance Measure?
  6. The decile score I can see when I log in to my Oriel account is different to the one my medical school gave me. What should I do?
  7. What is the SJT (selection assessment for FP 2017)?
  8. When will I have to take the SJT (selection assessment for FP 2017)
  9. Why is the SJT scored on a scale of 0-50 whilst the EPM is only 34-50?
  10. How can one 2 hour 20 minutes exam be worth the same numberof points as 5/6 years at medical school?
  11. How do you know the SJT is a valid test (i.e. measures the attributes it is supposed to)?
  12. Can I link my application to another applicant?
  13. If I have a criminal conviction (which I must declare on my application form), what do I do?
  14. How do UoA preferences work when it comes to allocating FP applicants to places?
  15. What happens if there are not enough applicants for the number of vacancies available?
  16. What happens if there are not enough foundation training jobs for everyone who applies?
  17. Is it possible for me to be allocated to my first choice unit of application (UoA) if I’m on the reserve list?
  18. What happens if not enough vacancies arise for all applicants on the reserve list?
  19. Can I appeal against the outcome of my application?
  20. What happens if I do not wish to accept the post?
  21. I’ve been allocated to a foundation programme which was not my first choice. Can I continue working in this programme whilst re-applying for next year?
  22. Due to a change in my circumstances, I may not be able to take up my post in my allocated foundation school. What can I do?
  23. What is the process for providing references for the Foundation Programme?
  24. How do I know if a reference has been submitted?
  25. What if my referee does not provide a reference by the deadline?
  26. Can I change my referees?
  27. Can an ST3 act as my referee?
  28. What is the difference between date of qualification and date of graduation?
  29. What happens if I do not pass my final exams and graduate as expected?
  30. I applied last year but my application was withdrawn. Do I have to sit the SJT again?
  31. My GMC number on my application is wrong. How can I amend it?
  32. How do I apply for an F2 post?
  33. Can I apply to specialty training?
  34. I applied last year but withdrew my application. I want to re-apply for FP 2017 – will my log in details be the same?

03 Eligibility - General


  1. I am studying medicine at a non-UK medical school; can I apply to the Foundation Programme?
  2. I graduated from a UK medical school in 2012; can I still apply to the Foundation Programme?
  3. How do I apply as a refugee doctor if I can't get documents from my home country?
  4. Do I have to provide the UKFPO with academic transcripts from my secondary education?
  5. Do you wish to see academic transcripts of other degrees?
  6. I graduated some time ago and no-one at my medical school knows me or remembers me anymore. Do I still have to ask them to complete a Dean's Statement and what do I do if they say they can't provide it?
  7. I have a UK medical degree from a school outside of the UK; will my medical school nominate me?
  8. Is there anything I can do to assist my eligibility application and reduce the chances of it being rejected?
  9. If I am deemed eligible to apply, does this mean I am guaranteed a job?
  10. How can I check that my documents have reached you?
  11. Will it help if I come to the office to personally deliver my documentation?
  12. Do the eligibility form and dean's statement need to be typed or handwritten?

04 Eligibility - GMC Registration and PLAB


  1. What type of GMC registration do I need in order to apply for the Foundation Programme?
  2. What happens if I have full GMC registration?
  3. How will I know what level of GMC registration I will be awarded based on my internship or clinical experience?
  4. What are the latest dates for booking PLAB 1 and 2 in order to apply to the Foundation Programme 2017?
  5. What evidence do I need to submit in order to meet the UKFPO's eligibility requirements relating to GMC Registration/PLAB?
  6. Can I provide my PLAB documentation after the eligibility checking period has closed?
  7. What will happen to my application if I am unable to book a PLAB 1 exam for 16 March 2017?
  8. If I have met the eligibility requirements for PLAB at the time of my eligibility application are there any further actions/requirements that I must undertake?
  9. As an EEA citizen studying in an EEA country I am exempt from undertaking PLAB? What can I provide to the Eligibility Office as evidence of my exemption?
  10. What format shall I provide PLAB information to the Eligibility Office?
  11. How do I evidence that I meet the GMC requirements for provisional registration?
  12. I am an EEA national; how do I evidence that I am not required to take PLAB?

05 Eligibility - English Language Requirements


  1. What are the English language requirements for entry into the Foundation Programme?
  2. What is IELTS?
  3. I have registered to take the General IELTS examination; is this sufficient for my application?
  4. The GMC has granted me exemption from IELTS; what can I provide to the UKFPO as evidence of this so I do not need to take IELTS?

06 Eligibility - Clinical Assessment


  1. I qualified prior to 2 August 2015 and therefore must undertake a clinical assessment. What does this involve?
  2. Can I take the clinical assessment at another time convenient for me?
  3. I need to take the clinical assessment, which SJT should I take?
  4. If I passed my clinical assessment for entry to FP2016 (last year), do I need to be reassessed this year?
  5. What happens if I fail the clinical assessment?
  6. If I have paid for the clinical assessment but have my application withdrawn as I do not hold the right to work in the UK, will I receive a refund?
  7. If I have paid for the clinical assessment but do not attend, can my payment be carried forward for future years?

07 Eligibility - Right to work


  1. What can I provide as acceptable proof that I have the right to work in the UK as part of my eligibilty application?
  2. I do not currently hold the right to work in the UK but have been deemed 'eligible to apply subject to providing right to work and passing the UKFPO clinical assessment?' - what does this mean?
  3. Can I provide proof of my right to work documentation after the eligibility period has closed?
  4. I am currently studying in the UK and have a Tier 4 visa. Will this meet the right to work requirements?
  5. I graduated from a UK University before August 2014, am I eligible for a Tier 4 Visa?

08 Eligibility - Applying online


  1. What is an internship?
  2. Declaration 2 on the Eligibility Application says I must submit all required supporting document to the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office by the required date. What supporting documentation do I need to submit?
  3. Can I use my mobile number as my main telephone number?
  4. My degree is in my maiden name/I have changed my name since receiving my degree. Can I still apply?

08 Other education achievements - general


  1. How many points are available for educational achievements?
  2. Can I upload more than one piece of evidence for each achievement?
  3. What format can my evidence be uploaded in and is there a size limit?
  4. How can I reduce the size of my documents to fit the requirements?
  5. Can I upload documents in black and white?
  6. Will I be penalised if I include something in the additional educational achievements section which the verifiers later decide does not meet the criteria?
  7. I've recently changed my name by deed poll and my educational achievements are all in my previous name. What can I do to prove they are my achievements?
  8. Can I appeal against my verified educational achievements score?
  9. Why were prizes removed from the educational achievements section?
  10. Can I send my evidence to the UKFPO to check before I upload it to my application?
  11. If the verification panel deems my evidence does not meet the requirements and therefore I am not awarded the points, will I have an opportunity to provide additional or alternative evidence?
  12. Why have presentations been removed from the application process?
  13. In the 'Format of Document' section for educational performance evidence it states that 'Please note that documents produced on an Apple Mac are not compatible'. I have scanned by publication evidence onto an Apple Mac to upload, will this be ok?
  14. Can I include a web link to my educational achievements evidence instead of the actual document?

09 Other educational achievements - degrees


  1. Can I get points for my MBA?
  2. I have a BSc and an MSc. How can I record both?
  3. I have a BA (2:2) from Oxford. After a period of time and upon payment of a fee, the BA has become an MA. Can I claim a Masters degree?
  4. I have a 2.1 MA from Edinburgh University. Would this gain four points on the application form?
  5. Does the subject of my honours degree matter?
  6. What should I put in the "subject of qualification"
  7. I have qualified as a dentist and passed my membership exams. How can I record this?
  8. I have an overseas degree and received a GPA score of 3.65 out of 4. What do I do?
  9. I have completed all the work required for my Masters degree (it is a MSc) and have a provisional pass, but will not graduate until July 2014. Can I count this on the application form and get four points?
  10. My degree certificate doesn't show my degree classification. What other evidence should I provide?
  11. Can I get points for a postgraduate diploma?
  12. I don't have the original copy of my degree certificate; is it ok to upload a photocopy?
  13. My degree certificate is not in English, what can I do?
  14. I have been awarded a degree, but I do not have a certificate yet. What can I provide as evidence?
  15. As a result of illness I was unable to complete my degree, but I was awarded my degree on a Deemed to have Deserve Honours (DDH) basis. Would I still be awarded the points?
  16. I do not have a degree certificate so have to supply the degree confirmation letter but my medical school doesn't have an official stamp. What can I do?
  17. I have an intergrated master's degree with a classification of 2.1, what evidence can I upload to confirm it is a master's degree not an undergraduate degree?

10 Other education achievements - publications


  1. I have had an abstract published but not a paper. Does this count?
  2. Is it possible to include a publication from a peer-reviewed journal that is available via abstracting and indexing databases other than PubMed, such as Cambridge Scientific Abstracts, Elsevier and CINAH?
  3. I have just heard that a paper of mine has been accepted, but don't have any more information, like a publication date or PMID. What can I do?
  4. Do I have to the be the first named author on a publication with a PMID to be awarded a point?
  5. Why do only publications with a PubMed ID qualify for points?
  6. I have a publication but it is in my maiden name; can I still include it on the form?
  7. My publication has a PubMed ID number but is only currently available in electronic format. What should I put for the volume and page number?
  8. If I am listed on PubMed as a collaborator and not an author, would I still be awarded a point?
  9. I have a publication with a PMID but I completed it during my previous degree and not my medical degree - does this still count for a point?
  10. I have a publication with a PCMID number - does this qualify for a point?
  11. If I enter an incorrect PMID number on my application, will my publication be verified using the title or author’s name?

11 Prescribing Safety Assessment


  1. If I passed the Prescribing Safety Assessment (PSA) in 2015, will I need to be reassessed this year?

01 general


  1. What is the Foundation Programme?

    The UK Foundation Programme is an integrated two-year training programme for newly qualified doctors who are eligible for provisional registration with the GMC in the UK.

    The programme was launched in August 2005 and follows a standard curriculum; the most recent edition is the FP Curriculum 2016. The FP Curriculum 2016 identifies the required outcomes for successful completion of each year of the programme and describes the assessments that foundation doctors are required to undertake.

    On successful completion of the first year of the programme, documented through an Annual Review of Competence Progression (ARCP) and subject to completion of a Certificate of Experience, doctors are eligible to apply for full GMC registration. Please refer to the GMC website for more information on the Certificate of Experience.

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  2. Who is responsible for delivering/overseeing the programme?

    The General Medical Council (GMC) is responsible for setting the standard required of foundation training, quality assurance against the standards and approval of training programmes. Postgraduate deaneries and LETB's are responsible for delivery and quality management of foundation programmes, which they manage through foundation schools.

    The national coordinating body for the Foundation Programme is the UK Foundation Programme Office (UKFPO), which has been commissioned by Health Education England (HEE) and the four UK health departments.

    You can read more about the role of the UKFPO by clicking here .

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  3. What are postgraduate deaneries?

    In England, from 1st April 2013, postgraduate deaneries became part of the newly formed Local Education Training Boards (LETBs). There are 13 LETBs across England.

    Wales and Northern Ireland still have a postgraduate deanery, and Scotland has four, each headed by a postgraduate dean.

    The deaneries/LETBs have responsibility for ensuring that the Foundation Programme is delivered to national standards set by the GMC. They are responsible for ensuring there is an effective educational infrastructure for foundation training through the foundation schools.

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  4. What are foundation schools?

    Foundation schools bring together local education providers (e.g. hospitals, GP practices, hospices) to offer foundation doctors training in a range of clinical settings so that they can attain all the outcomes required in the Curriculum. The schools are administered by a local staff which is supported by the deanery.

    In particular, foundation schools are responsible for ensuring the Foundation Programme is managed operationally in line with the FP Reference Guide 2016

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  5. How do I apply for less than full-time training?

    Applicants needing to train less than full-time as a foundation doctor (for reasons such as caring for a child or ill health) must compete with all other applicants for entry into the Foundation Programme. If successful, applicants should contact their allocated foundation school to discuss their training needs and how to access less than full-time training opportunities. Foundation schools should publish their process for less than full-time training on their website.

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  6. If I have any pending investigations into my fitness to practise, is there any action I need to take?

    You must contact the GMC as soon as possible to discuss the investigation with them. As with investigating criminal convictions, this may take some time, so it is advisable to do this sooner rather than later so that your employment contract is not held up.

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  7. What is the Malta Foundation School?

    By special agreement between the Department of Health (England) and the Health Care Services Division of the Maltese Ministry for Social Policy, the UKFPO provided technical support to establish a foundation training programme in Malta in July 2009. The UK recognises the Malta Foundation Programme as an affiliated programme as its curriculum, operational processes and quality assurance are based on those used in the UK. However, the Malta Foundation Programme is regulated by the Medical Council of Malta and not by the UK General Medical Council.

    A UK graduate who wishes to apply to the Malta Foundation Programme should seek the advice of their medical school. Under exceptional circumstances, the medical school in partnership with the local postgraduate deanery may prospectively approve training as a provisionally registered doctor outside the UK and, upon satisfactory completion, support their application for full registration with the GMC. If prospective approval is not given to a UK medical graduate, an application for full GMC registration will not be possible.

    The Malta Foundation School has its own recruitment process and does not participate in the national application process for the UK Foundation Programme managed by the UKFPO.

    Any doctor who successfully completes the Malta Foundation Programme will be awarded a Malta Foundation Achievement of Competence Document (FACD) which is accepted as equivalence of the UK FACD by specialty training recruitment bodies in the UK.

    More details are available from the Malta Foundation School website.

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02 Application Process


  1. How do I apply to the Foundation Programme?

    Entry to the Foundation Programme is via a competitive application process.

    Before you can participate in the application process, you must ensure that you are eligible to apply. Information regarding the eligibility process for FP/AFP 2017 is available under the ''How to Apply/Eligibility'' section of the website.

    If you are currently studying at a UK Medical School, they can provide you with the relevant information and will be responsible for nominating you for the application process.

    All applicants must complete an online application in the autumn for the Foundation Programme commencing the following year.

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  2. Where can I find more information about the national application process?

    The FP/AFP 2017 Applicant's Handbook is available to download via the How to Apply section of this website. This provides useful information on the application process for the Foundation Programme and the Academic Foundation Programme along with advice on the selection methods, i.e. the Educational Performance Measure (EPM) and the SJT (selection assessment for FP 2017). It also includes the application timeline for the Foundation Programme commencing in August 2017 and other useful information. You may also find it useful to download the Application Presentation .

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  3. What is a unit of application (UoA)?

    A unit of application (UoA) is a group of one or more foundation schools that have joined together for the purposes of processing applications. The groupings for processing applications to the Academic Foundation Programme (AFP) are different and these are referred to as academic units of application (AUoA).

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  4. How is my application scored?

    Your overall application score will consist of your Educational Performance Measure (EPM) score (decile score plus educational achievements score) and the score you achieve for the SJT (selection assessment for FP 2017). More information about scores is available in the FP/AFP 2017 Applicant's Handbook .

    If you are applying for an Academic Foundation Programme (AFP), the score that is used to determine whether or not you receive an offer comprises your EPM score plus a score determined by the local AUoA. However, all AFP offers are subject to a satisfactory SJT score (i.e. you are not withdrawn from the process for an exceptionally low SJT score).

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  5. What is the Educational Performance Measure?

    The EPM is a measure of clinical and non-clinical skills, knowledge and performance up to the point of application. The EPM comprises two elements: medical school performance to date in deciles for which 34-43 points are available; and educational achievements recorded on your application form worth up to 7 points. A maximum of 50 points is available.

    Click here to read the EPM frequently asked questions.

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  6. The decile score I can see when I log in to my Oriel account is different to the one my medical school gave me. What should I do?

    If your EPM decile score is different to the one you were told by your medical school then you need to contact your medical school as soon as possible to clarify this. If you applied through the UKFPO Eligibility Office, you should contact the Eligibility Office. Changes to the decile score cannot be made after 16 December 2016.

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  7. What is the SJT (selection assessment for FP 2017)?

    The SJT (selection assessment for FP 2017) is an invigilated test designed to test the aptitudes expected of you as a foundation doctor and is used as a measure of meeting the national FP person specification . The SJT is taken under exam conditions and consists of 70 questions in 2 hours 20 minutes. It contains two question formats: rank five possible responses in order and select the three most appropriate responses. A maximum of 50 points is available. To learn more about the SJT please read the SJT FAQs.

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  8. When will I have to take the SJT (selection assessment for FP 2017)

    All applicants to the Foundation Programme and the Academic Foundation Programme (including military applicants) commencing in August 2017 are required to take the SJT in the UK on either:

    • 02 December 2016
    • 09 January 2017

    Your UK medical school or the UKFPO Eligibility Office will inform you of the date/s available to you. More information on the SJT is available on the UKFPO and ISFP websites .

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  9. Why is the SJT scored on a scale of 0-50 whilst the EPM is only 34-50?

    The relative weighting of the SJT and EPM, despite appearances, is 50:50. This relates to the distributions of scores from applicants between these measures. Please see appendix 3 of the Applicant's Handbook for more details.

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  10. How can one 2 hour 20 minutes exam be worth the same numberof points as 5/6 years at medical school?

    The SJT is a test of aptitudes and attributes required of an F1 Doctor. Although academic knowledge and clinical skill (as measured in the EPM) are clearly important, character attributes (as measured by the SJT) are also very relevant to your success as a Foundation Doctor. Please see appendix 3 of the Applicant's Handbook for more details.

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  11. How do you know the SJT is a valid test (i.e. measures the attributes it is supposed to)?

    Face validity and content validity of the SJT is achieved through subject matter expert (SME) involvement in test development, and mapping the SJT to the professional attributes derived from the FY1 Job Analysis and outlined in the person specification.

    The SJT has only been used for selection to the Foundation Programme since 2013 and so long term predictive validity is not yet possible to demonstrate, however an early validation study which followed a group of FP 2013 applicants into their first year as a Foundation Doctor, found that the SJT and the EPM were both predictors of future performance within FY1. The study found that the SJT is best able to predict future performance within low scoring applicants on the overall application score, whereas the EPM is best able to predict performance within high scoring applicants. This suggests that the two measures (SJT and EPM) are complementary in predicting FY1 performance.

    Academic studies of the validity SJT used in other contexts, including in GP recruitment, which was taken into account when introducing the SJT for selection to the Foundation Programme. Please refer to the SJT monograph for more details and full references.

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  12. Can I link my application to another applicant?

    Yes you can link your application to another person applying to the Foundation Programme (except military applicants), and you cannot link to someone applying to specialty or other medical training programme. Linking your applications will only guarantee you are allocated to the same UoA but not the same programme, employer or town.

    Please see the FP/AFP 2017 Applicant's Handbook for full details on linking your application.

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  13. If I have a criminal conviction (which I must declare on my application form), what do I do?

    The GMC must investigate all criminal convictions to ascertain whether you are fit to practise as a doctor. This can take several months. Therefore, it would be best for you to contact the GMC as soon as possible so they can start their investigations. If you are successful in obtaining a post and do not give the GMC sufficient notice, it may hold up your employment contract and therefore the start of your training programme.

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  14. How do UoA preferences work when it comes to allocating FP applicants to places?

    Applicants are required to rank all units of application (UoAs) in order of preference. Applicants will be allocated to units of application (UoAs) in score order using their total application score, (Educational Performance Measure score (EPM) plus SJT score), starting with the highest scoring applicant.

    Each applicant will be allocated to their highest preference UoA with a place available when it is their turn to be allocated. If their first choice is not available, the system will look at their second choice, and so on down their list of preferences until it finds their highest preference which still has a space available. Where applicants have the same score, the system will randomly select the order for allocation of applicants with that score.

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  15. What happens if there are not enough applicants for the number of vacancies available?

    If there are significantly fewer applicants than vacancies (under-subscription), some posts will be suspended in each foundation school in England using a pre-determined percentage. Posts will not be suspended in Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland. This ensures a consistent fill rate across the country so that patient care can be delivered in all areas.

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  16. What happens if there are not enough foundation training jobs for everyone who applies?

    Over the last few years, there have been more fully eligible applicants than vacancies across the UK (oversubscription) at the point of allocation to Units of Application, and this is expected to continue. When the programme is oversubscribed, applications from individuals who cannot provide evidence of their right to work in the UK by the given deadline will not be considered.

    To date all fully eligible applicants have been allocated by the start of the programme in August, as there are usually around 200 vacancies which arise between March and the August start date; however the UKFPO cannot guarantee this will always happen.

    If, at the end of the FP offers process, there are more fully eligible applicants than FP places, allocation to a UoA becomes a three stage process:

    1. The 'n' top scoring applicants will be placed on the primary list, where 'n' is the total number of vacancies available across the UK.
    2. These applicants will be allocated to a UoA in score order on 09 March 2016.
    3. The remaining applicants are placed on a reserve list, to be allocated in batches on three predetermined dates (May, June, July).

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  17. Is it possible for me to be allocated to my first choice unit of application (UoA) if I’m on the reserve list?

    Yes, there is a possibility that you could be allocated to your first choice UoA but this will only happen if there are spaces available in that UoA when it is your turn to be allocated. However, you will have much less choice in which programme you are matched to within that school once you are allocated. You will have to accept posts that are available rather than list your preferences from the full range of programmes.

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  18. What happens if not enough vacancies arise for all applicants on the reserve list?

    To date, all eligible applicants have secured a Foundation Programme post by the start date, including all applicants on the reserve list. However we cannot guarantee this in any given year. Any applicants who have not been allocated after the final reserve list batch allocation will be referred back to their medical school. Medical schools will then explore local opportunities for graduates to complete a year's training at F1 level.

    The number of vacancies that arise after the primary list allocation will depend on the number of applicants who withdraw from the process after they have been allocated. Applicants withdraw for a variety of reasons such as failing their final exams, failing PLAB or other personal reasons.

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  19. Can I appeal against the outcome of my application?

    There is an appeals process in place where an applicant can appeal against the outcome of the application process on the following grounds:

    • A service interruption through the UKFPO's application website (Oriel) may have disadvantaged you; or
    • The process was not applied with appropriate diligence or due care; or
    • There is evidence of prejudice, bias or conflict of interest during the recruitment process.

    You cannot appeal against your score and no feedback is provided on individual applications. The Application Appeals process has been published on our website and is available by following this link: The Foundation Programme - Key documents .

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  20. What happens if I do not wish to accept the post?

    Successful applicants will be allocated to one unit of application (UoA) only, and then matched to one programme only. Declining your allocated UoA or matched programme will mean you are withdrawing from the application process. There is no system to swap between UoAs or individual foundation schools. If you withdraw from the process, you will be unable to apply to the two year Foundation Programme until the following year. Vacancies that arise after the end of the national application process are normally service posts, for which doctors must have full GMC registration.

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  21. I’ve been allocated to a foundation programme which was not my first choice. Can I continue working in this programme whilst re-applying for next year?

    No. If you no longer wish to continue in your current foundation programme, you must withdraw from the process before reapplying the following year.

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  22. Due to a change in my circumstances, I may not be able to take up my post in my allocated foundation school. What can I do?

    If your circumstances have changed since you applied to the Foundation Programme but you are still able to undertake foundation training, you could consider whether or not you meet the criteria for an inter-foundation school transfer (IFST). Any IFST has to initially be considered and approved by the foundation school you have been allocated to before it can be considered by the foundation school you wish to transfer to. Any IFST would also be dependent on a vacancy being available in the school you wish to transfer to. Refer to the IFST guidance for full information on this process.

    If you are no longer able to undertake foundation training, you should contact your allocated UoA and withdraw from the process. You will be able to apply again next year if you are then in a position to start foundation training.

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  23. What is the process for providing references for the Foundation Programme?

    Applicants are required to provide names and contact details of two referees as part of their online application. The applicant must ensure that the referees are happy to provide a reference before nominating them. The applicant is also required to ensure that the email address provided for each referee is accessed regularly and the referee is aware of which email address has been used.

    The dates for the reference period are available in the FP/AFP 2017 Applicant's Handbook References are not used in the scoring or allocation process. They will have no bearing on your application and are used only by your employer as part of pre-employment checks

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  24. How do I know if a reference has been submitted?

    In order to check whether online references have been received, log in to your Oriel account and select "Submitted References" from the right-hand menu. This section will show you whether or not your references have been submitted. If a reference has been submitted, you will be able to view the content.

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  25. What if my referee does not provide a reference by the deadline?

    Please keep in mind that you are responsible for ensuring that two referees submit references for you before you start the Foundation Programme. A contract of employment will not be issued until these references are in place. If either or both of your referees is unable to submit an online structured reference by the deadline then your employing healthcare organisation will work with you to ensure appropriate references are submitted. This will not affect the way that your application is processed. The UKFPO cannot accept references via email, post or fax.

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  26. Can I change my referees?

    You can change your referee details online at any point up until the deadline for submission of references (see the FP/AFP 2017 Applicant's Handbook ), or until a reference is submitted whichever comes first. Once a reference is submitted, it cannot be changed and you cannot request a different reference.

    If you change the details of a nominated referee after they have received an email asking them to provide a reference for you, the system will automatically send a reference request email to the new email address. This will occur each time a referee's email address is changed (the system effectively believes that a new referee has been nominated).

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  27. Can an ST3 act as my referee?

    No, because they are still a trainee. Referees must be associate specialist or consultant level.

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  28. What is the difference between date of qualification and date of graduation?

    The date of qualification is the date on which a University Board agrees the results and issues a pass list, then notifies students of the result. The date of graduation is the date of the award ceremony.

    Some medical schools have a period of many months between the date of qualification and the date of graduation, so the date of graduation is not a reliable indicator of when the applicant passed their degree and how up to date their clinical knowledge and skills may be.

    The relevant date for our application process is when an applicant passed their qualification, not when they graduated. If you are still unsure, we recommend that you speak with your medical school for further guidance.

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  29. What happens if I do not pass my final exams and graduate as expected?

    You will be withdrawn from the application process and will have to re-apply the following year. The post you were allocated to you will not be held; you will have to re-apply in open competition the following year.

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  30. I applied last year but my application was withdrawn. Do I have to sit the SJT again?

    Yes you will be required to take the SJT again as part of your FP 2017 application.

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  31. My GMC number on my application is wrong. How can I amend it?

    Your GMC number will be pre-populated in the personal details section of your Oriel account. If your GMC number is incorrect you can update this yourself before you submit your application. However, if you do not notice any discrepancies in your GMC number until after you have submitted your application form, you will need to contact your local foundation school to request for it to be amended.

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  32. How do I apply for an F2 post?

    If you successfully apply for the two-year integrated Foundation Programme, you will be allocated to an F2 post in one of two ways. Some foundation schools match applicants to a two-year rotation at the outset, while others allow you to express your preference for an F2 rotation during your F1 year.

    If you have full GMC registration or wish to change foundation schools on completion of your F1 year, you can apply for a standalone one-year F2 post. Each foundation school recruits for one-year stand-alone F2 posts at a local level and the UK Foundation Programme Office is not involved in this. Each foundation school will have their own timetable and their own deadline for receiving applications. The UKFPO has recently published a framework and person specification for recruitment to one-year stand-alone F2 programmes. Please go to http://www.foundationprogramme.nhs.uk/pages/home/how-to-apply/F2-LATs where you will find this document along with links to the foundation school F2 recruitment pages. Vacancies will also be advertised on NHS Jobs.

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  33. Can I apply to specialty training?

    To be eligible to apply for specialty training you must meet all essential criteria of the relevant person specification, including full GMC registration with a licence to practise and evidence of having achieved foundation competence (as defined by the outcomes of the FP Curriculum).

    More information on applying to specialty training can be found on the national Specialty Recruitment website or individual deanery websites.

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  34. I applied last year but withdrew my application. I want to re-apply for FP 2017 – will my log in details be the same?

    No, you will need to register for a new Oriel account for the FP 2017 application round.

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03 Eligibility - General


  1. I am studying medicine at a non-UK medical school; can I apply to the Foundation Programme?

    Yes, graduates from non-UK medical schools can apply but first you need to a complete an online eligibility application form and submit documentation to the UKFPO's Eligibility Office in order to determine whether or not you meet the eligibility criteria. For more information on the eligibility checking process, including the new online application form that has been introduced this year, and to download all the FP2017 Eligibility documents go to the Eligibility webpage.

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  2. I graduated from a UK medical school in 2012; can I still apply to the Foundation Programme?

    Yes you can apply, but as you graduated from a UK medical school prior to 2 August 2015, you will need to submit an eligibility application to the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office and will be required to undertake the national clinical assessment, an assessment of your clinical skills. For more information on the eligibility checking process and to download all the FP 2017 eligibility documents please click here.

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  3. How do I apply as a refugee doctor if I can't get documents from my home country?

    We are aware that refugees may not be able to produce all of the evidence required by the Eligibility Office. Applicants with refugee status who believe they meet the eligibility criteria and wish to apply for a place on the Foundation Programme should contact the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office (eligibility@foundationprogramme.nhs.uk) prior to applying to discuss their personal circumstances.

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  4. Do I have to provide the UKFPO with academic transcripts from my secondary education?

    No, please provide an academic transcript that relates to your medical degree only.

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  5. Do you wish to see academic transcripts of other degrees?

    No, please provide an academic transcript that relates to your medical degree only.

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  6. I graduated some time ago and no-one at my medical school knows me or remembers me anymore. Do I still have to ask them to complete a Dean's Statement and what do I do if they say they can't provide it?

    The General Medical Council has regulated that F1 doctors must have written approval from their university to enter a programme that completes their basic medical education. This can be evidenced either through participation in the Foundation Programme national application process, or, if appointed locally to a training post in the Foundation Programme, by a letter from the medical school confirming approval to take up the post or programme, and the arrangements for signing the Certificate of Experience.

    In order to take part in the national application process, you must provide a fully completed Dean’s Statement that gives you approval to apply, and confirms you are of good standing and fit to practise medicine safely in accordance with the GMC’s Good Medical Practice (2013).

    If you graduated some time ago and are no longer known to the medical school, the Dean understandably may be reluctant to confirm that you are of good standing and fit to practise.

    We suggest in these circumstances that you contact the Dean, explain your circumstances and ask them what evidence you could provide that would satisfy them that you are of good standing and fit to practise.
    By way of guidance, we would suggest that the following constitute reasonable evidence for you to provide to the Dean:


    a) A curriculum vitae that outlines what you have been doing during the time since you graduated. An accompanying letter should include a declaration of whether you have any criminal convictions and whether you have been investigated by any professional body.

    b) Identification of three referees who can vouch for this account of your history and your suitability to take up a post that carries professional responsibilities. Your references should be from professional persons or persons of good standing in the community. Your referees should not be related to you by birth or marriage, or be in a personal relationship with you or live at the same address as you. Suitable referees would include employers and members of professional bodies. Where your referees are licensed or registered professionals (including registered medical practitioners) they should provide details of the relevant regulatory body and include details of their registration or reference number. You should provide copies of these references to the Dean but it must be possible to verify them independently, so do ensure that your referees provide details of a business address or telephone number where they can be contacted.

    You should also be willing to attend a face-to-face interview with the Dean if they request this.

    This process may take some time so contact the Dean at the earliest opportunity and well before the deadline for submitting the statement to the Eligibility Office to confirm what requirements they have before they will consider signing the Dean’s statement. Depending on your circumstances, the Dean may also need time to contact the GMC for advice about your request.

    Please note that you will be considered ineligible to apply for the Foundation Programme 2017 if you fail to provide a fully completed Dean’s statement that confirms all required statements. If, after following the steps above, your Dean is still unable to complete a Dean’s Statement, you can contact the Eligibility Office for further advice before the closing date for submitting eligibility documentation. Please note though that it may not be possible for the Eligibility Office to resolve the issue.

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  7. I have a UK medical degree from a school outside of the UK; will my medical school nominate me?

    If you have or are studying for a UK medical degree outside the UK and are a UK or EEA national your affiliated UK medical school will arrange for you to be nominated to apply for FP 2017.

    If you are not a UK or EEA national you will be required to submit an eligibility application prior to applying for the Foundation Programme.

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  8. Is there anything I can do to assist my eligibility application and reduce the chances of it being rejected?

    Yes. Taking extra care in completing your eligibility form may mean the difference between being assessed as eligible to apply or ineligible.

    • Ensure that you read the Guidance notes for submitting supporting documentation and Medical School Dean’s Statement Notes carefully – they both contain explicit guidance which you should read and digest.
    • Ensure you have completed all sections of the form with the information requested.
    • Adhere to ALL deadlines – in the past several doctors have had to put their career plans on hold for an entire year simply by submitting paperwork late – deadlines are there for a reason and exceptions cannot be made, regardless of the circumstances.
    • Ensure your application is typed or word processed. Handwritten documentation is not acceptable.
    • Ensure your declaration is signed in ink.
    • Ensure you supply one passport photo with your eligibility application.
    • Ensure any photocopied documents are clear.
    • Ensure the second page of the Dean’s Statement has your name on it and is signed.
    • Ensure your postgraduate experience is completed in full and correctly.

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  9. If I am deemed eligible to apply, does this mean I am guaranteed a job?

    Being assessed as eligible to apply gives applicants the opportunity to apply to the Foundation Programme/Academic Foundation Programme 2017 through the national application process. It does not guarantee appointment to a job.

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  10. How can I check that my documents have reached you?

    You will be sent an acknowledgement email within five working days of receipt of your supporting documentation. If you do not hear anything from us within this timescale it means that we have not received your documentation. It is advisable to send your documents to the Eligibility Office as early as possible to ensure receipt by the deadline. Late eligibility applications will not be accepted under any circumstances. It is your responsibility to ensure your documentation arrives at the Eligibility Office safely – you may wish to consider using a guaranteed delivery service, but again, please be reminded that if delays in this service occur, we will not be able to accept late applications.

    The address to send your documentation to is:

    UKFPO Eligibility Office
    St Chad's Court
    213 Hagley Road
    Edgbaston
    Birmingham
    B16 9RG

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  11. Will it help if I come to the office to personally deliver my documentation?

    No. The Eligibility Office is unable to process application documentation on a face-to-face basis. Submissions of eligibility documentation are strictly by post only.

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  12. Do the eligibility form and dean's statement need to be typed or handwritten?

    The Eligibility application form must now be completed online on Oriel. The Dean's Statement can be typed or handwritten.

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04 Eligibility - GMC Registration and PLAB


  1. What type of GMC registration do I need in order to apply for the Foundation Programme?

    All applicants must hold or ensure that they are eligible to obtain provisional GMC registration with a licence to practise* before submitting an eligibility application. You do not need to have provisional registration with a licence to practise before you apply but you must have it before the Foundation Programme starts.

    * Please refer to the General Medical Council website for details. 
     

     

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  2. What happens if I have full GMC registration?

    If you hold, or are eligible to obtain, full GMC registration then you are not eligible to apply for the two-year national Foundation Programme.

    However you may apply directly for a one-year stand-alone F2 programme. The UKFPO is not responsible for F2 recruitment. Each foundation school recruits for F2 posts at a local level and will have its own timetable and deadline for receiving applications. The UKFPO has recently published a national person specification for one-year stand-alone fixed term F2 programme which you can download here. However recruitment to one-year stand-alone F2 programmes is still managed locally by the foundation schools. Please visit the individual foundation school websites for more information. Please click here for a list of addresses. You may also find it useful to refer to the medical press and NHS Jobs website.  

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  3. How will I know what level of GMC registration I will be awarded based on my internship or clinical experience?

    The General Medical Council (GMC) is the body responsible for determining the level of registration that will be awarded to individuals.

    For GMC registration information please see the relevant section on the GMC website.

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  4. What are the latest dates for booking PLAB 1 and 2 in order to apply to the Foundation Programme 2017?

    The GMC has confirmed that unless an applicant has booked a place on, or before, the PLAB 1 examination being held on 16 March 2017, there will not be sufficient time to gain provisional registration by the start of the Foundation Programme in August 2017.  Please note: The closing date for booking PLAB 1 to sit it in the United Kingdom is 9 March 2017 (subject to availability).

    We highly recommend that where possible applicants book their PLAB 1 exam before the last date of 9 March 2017 as this is likely to be fully booked.

    You should submit proof of the PLAB 1 examination booking as part of your eligibility application where possible.

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  5. What evidence do I need to submit in order to meet the UKFPO's eligibility requirements relating to GMC Registration/PLAB?

    • If you have already qualified from medical school:

    As part of the eligibility application, and in order to demonstrate that you are able to gain provisional GMC registration by the start of the Foundation Programme 2017 (i.e. 2 August 2017), you are required to provide one of the following:

    a) proof that you have gained provisional GMC registration; or
    b) proof that you have passed your PLAB 1 or PLAB 2 exam; or
    c) proof that you have booked your PLAB 1 or PLAB 2 exam within certain specified timescales; or
    d) proof that you are not required to sit the PLAB exams.

    • If you have not yet qualified from medical school:

    If you have not yet qualified, you must either provide evidence that you are not required to take PLAB or a valid Dean’s Statement showing that you will qualify from medical school before 9 March 2017. The closing date for booking PLAB 1 is 9 March 2017 (subject to availability).

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  6. Can I provide my PLAB documentation after the eligibility checking period has closed?

    If you have already qualified then yes. The required documentation must be received by the Eligibility Office no later than 12 January 2017, but we would advise you to submit confirmation as soon as possible.

    If you do not provide confirmation by the deadline then you will not be eligible to apply for the Foundation Programme 2017 and your application will be withdrawn from the process.

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  7. What will happen to my application if I am unable to book a PLAB 1 exam for 16 March 2017?

    If your PLAB 1 exam occurs after the 16 March 2017 then you will not have time to sit PLAB 2 and obtain provisional registration with a licence to practise before the start of the Foundation Programme 2017. Therefore you will no longer be eligible and your application will be withdrawn from the application process.

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  8. If I have met the eligibility requirements for PLAB at the time of my eligibility application are there any further actions/requirements that I must undertake?

    The UK’s General Medical Council (GMC) has confirmed that you will not have time to complete the PLAB 1 and PLAB 2 examinations and obtain GMC registration before the start of the Foundation Programme in August 2017 unless PLAB 1 is taken by 16 March 2017.

    • You must confirm to the UKFPO Eligibility Office by 12 January 2017 that you have booked PLAB 1. The appointment must be scheduled for no later than 16 March 2017.
    • You must confirm to the UKFPO that you have passed PLAB 1 by (date to be confirmed).
    • You must confirm that you have booked PLAB 2 (date to be confirmed).
    • You must confirm that you have passed PLAB 2 (date to be confirmed).

    The UKFPO will write to you with these deadline dates when they are available from the GMC and they will be available to view on our website.

    If you do not provide proof of booking/passing PLAB on the required dates, your application will be withdrawn from the process.

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  9. As an EEA citizen studying in an EEA country I am exempt from undertaking PLAB? What can I provide to the Eligibility Office as evidence of my exemption?

    Please tick the relevant box on your eligibility application form and provide proof of your nationality (passport) and proof of your country of study (medical degree certificate). No additional document is required.

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  10. What format shall I provide PLAB information to the Eligibility Office?

    If you have the required PLAB documentation at the time of submitting your eligibility application please send hard copies with your supporting documents.

    If you are submitting PLAB documentation after the eligibility application submission period please send it via email to the following email address eligibility@foundationprogramme.nhs.uk

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  11. How do I evidence that I meet the GMC requirements for provisional registration?

    Your passport and Dean’s Statement are used to evidence if you meet the GMC requirements. These documents will determine whether you are required to undertake PLAB as part of your application.

    These documents will also evidence whether you are likely to receive provisional or full registration with the GMC based on your country of qualification. Please note, only applicants who are eligible to obtain provisional GMC registration can apply for the 2 year Foundation Programme. Please contact the GMC directly for information on registration as they are the governing body who grant the licence. http://www.gmc-uk.org/.

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  12. I am an EEA national; how do I evidence that I am not required to take PLAB?

    EEA nationals are not required to sit PLAB as part of their GMC registration requirements. This will be evidenced by an appropriate passport demonstrating EEA status.

     

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05 Eligibility - English Language Requirements


  1. What are the English language requirements for entry into the Foundation Programme?

    In order to satisfy the English language requirements for entry into the Foundation Programme you must supply one of the following;

    EITHER a signed and stamped Dean’s Statement 2017* confirming all of the following:

    • that the entire primary medical qualification undertaken by the applicant is being taught/was taught solely in English
    • that all examinations undertaken by the applicant during his/her primary medical qualification will be/were solely in English
    • that the applicant’s primary medical qualification will include/included a minimum of 75% contact with patients in English.

    OR

    A valid academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS) certificate confirming a minimum score of 7.5 in each of the four domains: reading, writing, listening and speaking. Please note that an average score of 7.5 is not sufficient.

    IELTS certificates are only valid for TWO years and therefore must be dated no earlier than 12 August 2014.

    Please note that no other form of English language proficiency will be accepted.

    *IMPORTANT: The UKFPO will not accept English language evidence issued by universities listed here on the GMC website. Therefore, if your university is one of those listed, you will be required to submit a valid IELTS certificate with your eligibility application.

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  2. What is IELTS?

    The academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS) provides employers with evidence that your language and communication skills comply with the person specification. 

    For more information on how to undertake an IELTS exam, please visit the IELTS website.

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  3. I have registered to take the General IELTS examination; is this sufficient for my application?

    No, you must achieve the necessary level in the Academic IELTS to be eligible to apply for the programme.

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  4. The GMC has granted me exemption from IELTS; what can I provide to the UKFPO as evidence of this so I do not need to take IELTS?

    GMC exemption from IELTS does not make you exempt from IELTS as part of the Foundation Programme eligibility application. You are still required to submit evidence of your English language proficiency as detailed below:

    EITHER a signed and stamped Dean’s Statement 2017* confirming all of the following:

    • that the entire primary medical qualification undertaken by the applicant is being taught/was taught solely in English
    • that all examinations undertaken by the applicant during his/her primary medical qualification will be/were solely in English 
    • that the applicant’s primary medical qualification will include/included a minimum of 75% contact with patients in English.

    OR

    A valid academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS) certificate confirming a minimum score of 7.5 in each of the four domains: reading, writing, listening and speaking. Please note that an average score of 7.5 is not sufficient.

    IELTS certificates are only valid for TWO years and therefore must be dated no earlier than 12 August 2013.

    Please note that no other form of English language proficiency will be accepted.

    *IMPORTANT: The UKFPO will not accept English language evidence issued by universities listed here on the GMC website. Therefore, if your university is one of those listed, you will be required to submit a valid IELTS certificate with your eligibility application.

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06 Eligibility - Clinical Assessment


  1. I qualified prior to 2 August 2015 and therefore must undertake a clinical assessment. What does this involve?

    The national clinical assessment is designed to ensure that a doctor has maintained their clinical and professional skills since qualification. The clinical assessment will be undertaken by the University Hospital of South Manchester and will take place on 25 - 27 October 2016.

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  2. Can I take the clinical assessment at another time convenient for me?

    No, the dates for the national clinical assessment are 25 - 27 October 2016. There are no alternative dates available. 

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  3. I need to take the clinical assessment, which SJT should I take?

    As a Clinical Assessment candidate, it is recommended you book onto the January SJT. Clinical Assessment results will be issued on 7 November 2016 and this will allow sufficient time for booking travel and accommodation prior to the January session of SJT.

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  4. If I passed my clinical assessment for entry to FP2016 (last year), do I need to be reassessed this year?

    A pass result obtained by undertaking the national clinical assessment is valid for two recruitment years i.e. FP 2016 and FP 2017.

    Therefore, if you passed the clinical assessment last year for FP 2016, you will not need to be re-assessed for FP 2017. 

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  5. What happens if I fail the clinical assessment?

    If you fail the clinical assessment you will no longer be eligible to apply for the Foundation Programme 2017 and you will be withdrawn from the process. You cannot re-sit the assessment for entry to FP 2017, however this does not stop you re-applying for FP 2018.

    Please note that no refund requests will be considered under any circumstances as the fee is payable on a non-refundable basis.

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  6. If I have paid for the clinical assessment but have my application withdrawn as I do not hold the right to work in the UK, will I receive a refund?

    Clinical assessment fees are strictly non-refundable and so applicants should take this into consideration when deciding if they wish to proceed with the assessment. Those applicants who have to take a clinical assessment will need to pay the full cost of £850 before they know whether or not their application will be considered.

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  7. If I have paid for the clinical assessment but do not attend, can my payment be carried forward for future years?

    Clinical assessment fees are strictly non-transferable and so applicants should take this into consideration when deciding if they wish to proceed with the assessment. If you do not attend the Clinical Assessment and subsequently reapply for the Foundation Programme in a following year, you need to pay the full cost again to undertake the Clinical Assessment.

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07 Eligibility - Right to work


  1. What can I provide as acceptable proof that I have the right to work in the UK as part of my eligibilty application?

    For specific documents that are accepted by the Eligibility Office, please see the Guidance notes for submitting supporting documentation which provide a detailed list. These can be downloaded from the Eligibility page of the UKFPO website.

    The Eligibility Office is not an immigration authority and cannot advise you on how to obtain the right to work in the UK. For general queries regarding visa and right to work issues, we recommend that you refer to the UK Border Agency.

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  2. I do not currently hold the right to work in the UK but have been deemed 'eligible to apply subject to providing right to work and passing the UKFPO clinical assessment?' - what does this mean?

    For the Foundation Programme commencing in August 2017 (FP 2017), we expect there will be more fully eligible applicants than there are vacancies based on trends over the last few years. If there are more fully eligible applicants than vacancies, we will not consider applications from individuals who do not provide the right to work in the UK by 12 January 2017.  Individuals in this category will be withdrawn from the national application process on 13 January 2017.

    For those applicants who are required to undertake the national clinical assessment, they will be required to pay the full cost of £850 before they know whether or not their application will be considered. Clinical assessment fees are strictly non-refundable.

    If you are required to attend a clinical assessment but you will not be able to provide evidence of your right to work in the UK by 12 January 2017 you should consider very carefully whether or not you wish to incur the £850 cost as it is very likely your application will not be considered.

    However, you may wish to proceed with the clinical assessment since passing this assessment may be viewed favourably by local employing organisations if you are eligible to apply for other medical posts in the UK.

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  3. Can I provide proof of my right to work documentation after the eligibility period has closed?

    Yes, but you must be submit proof of your right to work to the Eligibility Office no later than 12 January 2017.  If you are able to submit the documentation by this deadline, your application will be processed in the same way as all applicants who have the right to work in the UK.

    If you do not provide the documentation by the deadline, your application will be withdrawn from the process if there are more fully eligible applicants than vacancies.

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  4. I am currently studying in the UK and have a Tier 4 visa. Will this meet the right to work requirements?

    A Tier 4 visa is not appropriate evidence for Right to Work.

    Tier 4 visas require an unconditional offer of a place on a course and you will not have this until the allocation in the Spring of 2017, with right to work evidence being required as part of your eligibility application on or before 12 January 2017.

    Tier 4 visas issued by other institutions would require an applicant to resign from that role or to complete their studies to undertake the Foundation Programme, and as such would invalidate your visa.

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  5. I graduated from a UK University before August 2014, am I eligible for a Tier 4 Visa?

    Whilst all non-UK/EEA nationals who graduate from a UK medical school are eligible to apply for UKFPO Tier 4 sponsorship; the national application process requires that all applicants have the right of work in the UK in place by 12 January 2017.  Applicants who are unable to comply with this requirement will be withdrawn from the national application process.

    Unfortunately, as the Foundation Programme does not commence until July/August 2017, the UKFPO are unable to offer sponsorship for any period prior to/other than the fulltime, two-year recognised Foundation Programme. We are therefore unfortunately unable to provide you with sponsorship aligned to national application requirements.

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08 Eligibility - Applying online


  1. What is an internship?

    Please refer to the GMC definition of an Internship, found under the Experience tab here:

    http://www.gmc-uk.org/doctors/before_you_apply/imgs.asp#Experience.  

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  2. Declaration 2 on the Eligibility Application says I must submit all required supporting document to the UKFPO’s Eligibility Office by the required date. What supporting documentation do I need to submit?

    When you submit your online application you will receive an email to confirm the required documentation and guidance to complete your Eligibility application.

    If you have submitted your online application and have not received an email, please contact the Eligibility Office here: eligibility@FoundationProgramme.nhs.uk. 


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  3. Can I use my mobile number as my main telephone number?

    You are able to enter a mobile or land line in this field. Please remember to include the appropriate country dialling codes if you are outside of the UK.

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  4. My degree is in my maiden name/I have changed my name since receiving my degree. Can I still apply?

    The requirement is for all an applicant’s documentation to clearly indicate the same applicant. If your documentation does not reflect the name you have used during the Eligibility Online Application you must provide evidence to support this. 

    Valid evidence considered would be a marriage certificate or legal documentation demonstrating a name change.

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08 Other education achievements - general


  1. How many points are available for educational achievements?

    There are seven points in total: five for additional degrees and up to two for publications.

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  2. Can I upload more than one piece of evidence for each achievement?

    No, you can only upload one file as evidence for each degree or publication. If your evidence includes more than one document (e.g. your degree certificate and an offical translation) you will need to scan them into a single file for you upload it.

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  3. What format can my evidence be uploaded in and is there a size limit?

    Evidence can be uploaded in any of the following formats:

    • .doc
    • .docx
    • .rtf
    • .pdf
    • .jpg

    The size limit is 2MB per upload and only one piece of evidence can be uploaded per educational achievement (see FAQ 2 above).

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  4. How can I reduce the size of my documents to fit the requirements?

    Please click here to read guidance on how to reduce the size of documents using a HP scanner. Please note that most scanners will have an option to reduce the size of the scanned document.

    We recommend that you contact your scanner supplier for more information on how to reduce the size of your documents.

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  5. Can I upload documents in black and white?

    Yes, documents can be uploaded in either colour or black and white as long as the required information is clearly legible.

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  6. Will I be penalised if I include something in the additional educational achievements section which the verifiers later decide does not meet the criteria?

    The FP/AFP 2016 Applicant’s Handbook includes details of all valid achievements and the evidence required. We recommend that you only record achievements that meet the criteria. However, you will not be penalised if you include something that does not meet the criteria. The verification panel will simply reduce your score accordingly.

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  7. I've recently changed my name by deed poll and my educational achievements are all in my previous name. What can I do to prove they are my achievements?

    You need to complete the ‘Previous family name/surname’ question in the personal details section of the application form. This will be used to verify any educational achievements in your previous name. Failure to provide this information will mean any achievements in your previous name will not be awarded points.

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  8. Can I appeal against my verified educational achievements score?

    You will be able to view your verified educational achievements score on FPAS on 28 October 2014. If, after reviewing the criteria in the FP/AFP 2015 Applicant's Handbook and the evidence you uploaded, you believe there is a discrepancy with your score, either on the grounds that the verification process was not applied with appropriate diligence and care, or that the decision was made in a prejudicial way. The appeals process and proforma can be found on the Key Documents page.

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  9. Why were prizes removed from the educational achievements section?

    Each year the educational achievements criteria are subject to review by the UKFPO Recruitment Rules Group. When reviewing the 2013 criteria, it was found that fewer than 5% of educational achievements claimed were prizes. Of this 5%, almost 60% had their score adjusted to zero for their prize by the verification panel as the prize did not meet the stated criteria.

    It is evident from these figures that applicants found it difficult to comply with the criteria for this type of achievement due to the vast array of prizes awarded around the world. In order to ensure that points awarded for educational achievements are fair and that there is consistency between verification panels, prizes have been removed from the FP application process.

    Please note that applicants to the Academic Foundation Programme can still include details of prizes in the academic section of the application form.

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  10. Can I send my evidence to the UKFPO to check before I upload it to my application?

    No, the UKFPO cannot review educational achievements evidence on an individual basis. It is up to you to read the criteria in the FP/AFP 2016 Applicant’s Handbook and ensure it meets all the requirements. If your evidence is not sufficient you will not be awarded a point.

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  11. If the verification panel deems my evidence does not meet the requirements and therefore I am not awarded the points, will I have an opportunity to provide additional or alternative evidence?

    No, once your application has been submitted you cannot submit additional or alternative evidence to support your educational achievements.

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  12. Why have presentations been removed from the application process?

    Every year, the educational achievements criteria and process are reviewed by the UKFPO Recruitment Rules Group (this includes representatives from each of the UKFPO’s key stakeholder groups including the BMA MSC, GMC, NHS Employers, medical schools and foundation schools).  The review takes into account feedback received from applicants, as well as the clinicians and experts who participate in the National Verification Day. The aim is to continue to improve the process for applicants and changes may be recommended

    Many of you will already be aware that there are hundreds of conferences that take place across the world each year. It is not possible to identify all potentially recognisable medical professional/educational events ahead of the National Verification Day. In addition, it is evident from the 30% of applicants who had claimed points for presentations on their FP 2014 application and had their score adjusted, and from the number of presentation-related enquiries the UKFPO deals with, that it is difficult for applicants to understand how to comply with the criteria. We aim to be as consistent as possible  but with over 9,500 individual items to be verified, it is almost impossible for the verification panels to ensure they make a fair and objective judgement every time, and anomalies do occur.

    Therefore, to ensure the method by which points are awarded for educational achievements is fair and there is consistency between verification panels, the UKFPO Recruitment Rules Group has made the decision that points for educational achievements will be given for qualifications and publications only, and presentations will no longer qualify for points on the FP application form. While we understand that some individuals will not welcome this decision, we believe it is in the best interests of the majority of applicants and it will ensure the process remains consistent for all.

    Applicants who are also applying to the Academic Foundation Programme (AFP) can still include presentations in the ‘Academic Selection’ section of the online form. Additionally, these achievements can be useful for applications for posts throughout your medical career, especially if you are able to convert your presentation to a publication.

    The total number of points available for the educational achievements section will remain the same – up to five points for an additional degree, and up to two points for publications. 

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  13. In the 'Format of Document' section for educational performance evidence it states that 'Please note that documents produced on an Apple Mac are not compatible'. I have scanned by publication evidence onto an Apple Mac to upload, will this be ok?

    Documents which are produced in 'Pages' on an Apple Mac are not compatible on the application system. However, documents which are produced in PDF or Word on a Mac, or uploaded to a Mac, will be fine.

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  14. Can I include a web link to my educational achievements evidence instead of the actual document?

    Web links are not acceptable and will not be verified. You must upload a copy of the actual document as evidence.

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09 Other educational achievements - degrees


  1. Can I get points for my MBA?

    Yes. Any Postgraduate Masters degree that has been ratified by the examination board before you submit your application will qualify for four points, regardless of the discipline. This is providing the degree represents a further year of study in addition to the undergraduate degree and there is an entry requirement of a previous degree or equivalent.

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  2. I have a BSc and an MSc. How can I record both?

    No, it is only possible to claim points for one additional degree. We recommend you choose the one that gives you the highest number of points. Check the FP/AFP 2016 Applicant's Handbook for full details.

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  3. I have a BA (2:2) from Oxford. After a period of time and upon payment of a fee, the BA has become an MA. Can I claim a Masters degree?

    No. This degree is still an undergraduate degree. A Masters degree must entail an extra year of study in addition to the undergraduate degree and have an entry requirement of a previous degree or equivalent. You should choose honours degree, class 2:2 from the drop-down menu on the application form.

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  4. I have a 2.1 MA from Edinburgh University. Would this gain four points on the application form?

    No, this is an undergraduate degree; therefore you would be awarded three points.

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  5. Does the subject of my honours degree matter?

    No. All undergraduate and postgraduate degrees will be eligible for points regardless of the discipline, provided they have been ratified by the examination board by the date you submit your application.

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  6. What should I put in the "subject of qualification"

    The subject of qualification is written on your degree certificate.

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  7. I have qualified as a dentist and passed my membership exams. How can I record this?

    This section of the application form is only about additional degrees. You would choose BDS (Bachelor of Dental Surgery) from the drop down menu as stated in the FP/AFP 2016 Applicant's Handbook. Membership exams do not gain points.

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  8. I have an overseas degree and received a GPA score of 3.65 out of 4. What do I do?

    You need to refer to the FP/AFP 2016 Applicants Handbook which gives you guidance about how to convert overseas degrees. 

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  9. I have completed all the work required for my Masters degree (it is a MSc) and have a provisional pass, but will not graduate until July 2014. Can I count this on the application form and get four points?

    You can only be awarded points for this degree if it has been ratified by the examination board by the time you submit your application form and you can provide the evidence required. See the FP/AFP 2016 Applicant’s Handbook for further guidance.

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  10. My degree certificate doesn't show my degree classification. What other evidence should I provide?

    If your degree certificate does not display the class of the degree, you must provide the original certificate together with an official letter from the Registrar’s Office of the original university that confirms the classification.

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  11. Can I get points for a postgraduate diploma?

    No, only additional degrees qualify for points, postgraduate diplomas or certificates do not.

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  12. I don't have the original copy of my degree certificate; is it ok to upload a photocopy?

    Yes, as long as all the required information can be read clearly a photocopy is acceptable.

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  13. My degree certificate is not in English, what can I do?

    You will need to provide the original degree certificate along with an official English translation. As there is only room to provide one piece of evidence you will need to scan these into one document. Please note this also relates to degree certificates in Latin or Gaelic. 

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  14. I have been awarded a degree, but I do not have a certificate yet. What can I provide as evidence?

    If  you do not have degree certificate vailable, then youmust provide a degree confirmation letter, printed on university headed writing paper and include the official stamp of the University and the signature of the Dean (or authorised official in the Registrar’s office) that confirms the ratification of the degree. An example of this letter can be found in Appendix 1 of theFP/AFP 2015 Applicant's Handbook.

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  15. As a result of illness I was unable to complete my degree, but I was awarded my degree on a Deemed to have Deserve Honours (DDH) basis. Would I still be awarded the points?

    Degrees awarded on a DDH basis will only be awarded one point for an unclassified degree, regardless of what classification you were awarded. This is because there are only one or two universities that recognise degrees on this basis.

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  16. I do not have a degree certificate so have to supply the degree confirmation letter but my medical school doesn't have an official stamp. What can I do?

    As long as your degree confirmation letter provides all the required other information (see Appendix 1 of the FP/AFP 2015 Applicant's Handbook) and is written on official university headed paper and is signed by the Dean or authorised official in the Registrar's office then this will be sufficient. 

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  17. I have an intergrated master's degree with a classification of 2.1, what evidence can I upload to confirm it is a master's degree not an undergraduate degree?

    Typically masters' degrees are awarded a pass/merit or distinction classification.  If you are claiming points for an a master's degree and your certificate has the undergraduate classification i.e. 2.1,2.2 you must upload a copy of your degree certificate AND a letter from your University confirming that the level of qualification is aligned with the UK Higher Education Qualification Framework (published by QAA) at level 7 (England, Wale, N. Ireland) or level 11 (Scotland).  All letters must be on letter headed paper. 

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10 Other education achievements - publications


  1. I have had an abstract published but not a paper. Does this count?

    All publications which have a PubMed ID (PMID) are counted. However, the abstract will only count as a publication if the PMID links directly to the abstract and details of the title and author. If the PMID only links to conference proceedings and there is no detailed list, it will not count.

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  2. Is it possible to include a publication from a peer-reviewed journal that is available via abstracting and indexing databases other than PubMed, such as Cambridge Scientific Abstracts, Elsevier and CINAH?

    No. Only publications with a PubMed ID (PMID) will be accepted for purposes of the FP/AFP 2015 application.

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  3. I have just heard that a paper of mine has been accepted, but don't have any more information, like a publication date or PMID. What can I do?

    You cannot claim points for a publication if there is no PMID number. Therefore, in this case the paper will not count even if it has been accepted for publication.

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  4. Do I have to the be the first named author on a publication with a PMID to be awarded a point?

    No, you just have to be a named author.

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  5. Why do only publications with a PubMed ID qualify for points?

    This is to ensure all applicants are dealt with fairly and consistently. The rules regarding points awarded for educational achievements must be easily applied to all applications with no ambiguity and to avoid value judgements by the verifiers. For this reason, the UKFPO Recruitment Rules Group agreed that a PubMed ID is valid as a single, verifiable means of proving a paper has been published and removes any incertainty in verifying.

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  6. I have a publication but it is in my maiden name; can I still include it on the form?

    Yes, but you must ensure that you answer the question “Previous family name/surname” in the personal details section of the application form as this will be used to verify that the publication is your own work. Failure to answer this question will result in you not being awarded points for the publication.

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  7. My publication has a PubMed ID number but is only currently available in electronic format. What should I put for the volume and page number?

    If you do not have this information available, you should use '1' as the default value for the volume and page numbers.

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  8. If I am listed on PubMed as a collaborator and not an author, would I still be awarded a point?

    Points in this section are awarded for academic excellence so it is expected that you would have played a central role in the research and should therefore be listed as an author.

    If you are listed as a collaborator you will not be awarded a point.

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  9. I have a publication with a PMID but I completed it during my previous degree and not my medical degree - does this still count for a point?

    Educational achievements must have been undertaken since you began your university education (i.e. achievements from school or college do not count), but do not necessarily have to relate to your medical degree. 

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  10. I have a publication with a PCMID number - does this qualify for a point?

    No, only PubMed ID (PMID) numbers are accepted. PCMID, DOI or ISBN numbers are not. 

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  11. If I enter an incorrect PMID number on my application, will my publication be verified using the title or author’s name?

    No – only the PMID number will be used to verify your publication. If the number links to the wrong publication you will not be awarded the points. Therefore we advise that you enter the number carefully and check it to ensure it links to the correct work.

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11 Prescribing Safety Assessment


  1. If I passed the Prescribing Safety Assessment (PSA) in 2015, will I need to be reassessed this year?

    A PSA pass result is valid for 2 recruitment years i.e. FP 2016 and FP 2017.

    Therefore if you passed the Prescribing Safety Assessment in 2015, you will not be required to undertake the assessment again for FP 2016.

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