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How fitness to practise affects GMC provisional registration

  1. 17. Medical graduates who wish to work in the UK must apply to the GMC for provisional registration and answer questions about their health, conduct and any criminal record, which will help the GMC decide if they meet the requirements for registration. The GMC has a statutory duty to register only those doctors whose fitness to practise is not impaired. The GMC must reach this decision and cannot simply accept a decision made by another authority. If there are any concerns, the GMC will assess these and will decide whether to grant provisional registration.
  2. 18. The law doesn’t let the GMC make a conditional grant of registration, or register a doctor and consider their fitness to practise afterwards. At the time of application, a doctor is either fit to practise or not fit to practise.
  3. 19. Medical schools should tell students that the GMC is responsible for decisions about registration, and that this includes a separate test of fitness to practise. They should highlight this in admissions procedures, student handbooks and in fitness to practise guidance and procedures.
  4. 20. Medical schools must make clear to students that the GMC will consider any issue that calls their fitness to practise into question when they come to apply for provisional registration. In exceptional circumstances, this may include incidents that happened before they entered medical school as well as incidents that occur during their undergraduate years.
  5. 21. Medical schools should make students aware, before they apply for provisional registration, of the requirements in the GMC’s declaration of fitness to practise. Any disciplinary or fitness to practise action taken by a medical school or university – for example, any issue considered by a formal panel, committee or hearing – should be declared to the GMC, irrespective of the outcome. Medical schools should remind students that if they have any concerns about what they should declare to the GMC, they should speak to their medical school in the first instance.
  6. 22. If there is a concern that a student may be refused registration, the GMC may be able to give advice on the possible outcomes of an application based on the disclosed facts of the case. It is important to note that this would not bind the GMC to a particular decision at the point of registration. If students, medical school or university staff, or any other person have concerns, they should seek advice as early as possible.