To qualify for entry clearance in the Postgraduate Doctor and Dentist category, the applicant must:
Have successfully completed and obtained a recognised UK degree in medicine or dentistry from either:
Leave as a student (but not as a student nurse, not to re-sit examinations and not to write up a thesis) for at least one other year of their studies. This other year must not include their final academic year; and
The Postgraduate Doctors and Dentist category is not suitable for those who want to come to the UK to study at medical or dental schools. Such applications are considered under the student Rules.
The fact that doctors and dentists who wish to take Foundation Programmes in the UK are normally paid salaries does not bar them from qualification for entry under this section of the Rules.
The applicant should submit a genuine degree certificate confirming that they have been awarded the relevant qualifications, and also the contact details of their personal tutor so that their academic record can be verified if required. The qualification must have been awarded by a UK educational institution. Degrees awarded by overseas institutions, even those with a campus in the UK, do not meet the requirements of this category of the Rules.
A ‘recognised UK degree in medicine or dentistry’ is one that has been awarded by an institution that is recognised by the UK authorities. These institutions fall into two categories: Recognised Bodies and Listed Bodies. ECOs should check the DIUS website to confirm that the institution that awarded the qualification is either a recognised body or a listed body.
ECOs should check that the institution, which issued the degree qualification, is either a recognised or listed body. This can be done by checking the following websites:
Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills - Recognised UK Degrees
Recognised UK Degrees and Awards are also available on the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills websites:
If the institution is not listed on either of these websites, ECOs should make further enquiries with the institution to determine whether it is recognised. If it appears that a UK institution is awarding the qualification, but that most of the study takes place at a non-UK institution, ECOs are recommended to confirm with the UK institution that they have awarded the qualification and also to check that they are listed within the websites above.
Maintenance and Accommodation
Those undertaking a Foundation Programme will already have this post arranged when they apply for leave, and the evidence that they provide to confirm this should indicate the level of funds available to the applicant during their leave.
Date of completion of degree
ECOs should use the expiry date of the applicant’s leave as a student (granted to complete the medical / dental degree) as the date when the applicant completed their medical or dental degree. If the applicant has completed their medical or dental studies in the UK, but subsequently takes another course or period of study, then any leave granted to take this subsequent period of study does not count as leave “to complete their medical or dental degree”.
If the applicant is sponsored by a government or international scholarship agency, the duration of entry clearance granted must be in line with the consent of the sponsor, even if this is less than the time required to complete the Foundation Programme.
Previous periods of leave as a Postgraduate Doctor or Dentist
The Foundation Programme consists of one year at Pre-Registration House Officer level and one year at Senior House Officer level and was introduced on 2 August 2005 for doctors (although it will not be made compulsory until August 2007). Therefore ECOs may see some applicants who have previously been granted leave as a Postgraduate Doctor or Dentist to undertake their Pre-Registration House Officer year. This previous leave should be considered in the same way as leave previously granted leave as a Postgraduate Doctor or Dentist to undertake their Pre-Registration House Officer year. This previous leave should be considered in the same way as leave previously granted as a Postgraduate Doctor or Dentist to take the Foundation Programme. These applicants are still eligible for further leave up to a maximum of 3 years in total, if they meet the remaining revised requirements.
If the applicant meets the requirements of the Postgraduate Doctors and Dentists category, entry clearance may be granted as follows:
No individual may build up more than 36 months of leave in this category.
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