In Spain, it is necessary to pass MIR exam in order to access to specialized training and obtain a certificate of completion in Medicine. This test evaluates medical knowledge acquired during Primary Medicine Studies. The score obtained will allow to choose doctors the specialty and  a hospital to train. Normally it will take between two and five years of training as a Resident Internal Doctor (MIR) to obtain one of the 47 Spanish specialties qualifications.

Specialization in UK is different: students have two stages of training and no prior examination is required to access:

  1. Basic Training for two years:  Foundation Programme Training
  • During the first year or Foundation Year 1 (F1) doctors are trained in different areas and knowledge gained during medical degree is consolidated. It will be necessary to evaluate the work carried out to obtain access to the next level. Doctors are provisionally registered with the GMC.
  • During the second year or Foundation Year 2 (F2), greater responsibilities are acquired with patients and  staff under supervision, always under control.  At the end of the period,  students get the Foundation Program Certificate of Completion (FPCC) that enables medical graduates to access specialized training or general medical practice. Doctors are fully registered with the GMC.
  1. Specialized training between three and eight years: Medical Specialty Training. Candidates must choose specialty and the process will last according to their choice.

To train, for example, as General Practitioner a doctor must complete three years of specialized training or GP Specialty Training (GPST): 18 months of posts in a variety of hospital and specialities and  18 months in hospital post as a General Practice Speciality Registrar.

Through postgraduate examinations within the specialty you can obtain promotional categories such as “Member of the Royal College of Physicians” (MRCP) or “Member of the Royal College of Surgeons” (MRCS).

The Certificate of Completion Training is awarded by the General Medical Council (GMC) or the Royal Colleges. Once obtained, doctors can apply for a register as a specialist or GP in the GMC, necessary to practice in Consultant positions (maximum level of specialization) or General Practitioner.

EU / EEA citizens must be registered in the General Medical Council (GMC) if a specialized training is wished.

Related publication: Royal Colleges.

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