Research into perceptions of CESR and CEGPR routes to registration

What were the key findings?

The GMC commissioned this research to investigate stakeholder perceptions of the Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration (CESR) and the Certificate of Eligibility for the General Practice Register (CEGPR). It considers views on the robustness of processes leading to their award, their equivalence to the Certificate of Completion of Training (CCT) and the confidence they command among trainees, doctors, employers and assessors.

The findings are based on 1,422 completed surveys (response rate 14.7%) and 22 interviews with the following groups:

  • NHS employers (medical directors and HR directors)
  • Certificate holders (doctors on the GP and Specialist Registers)
  • Trainees (junior doctors in training)
  • Surveys of SAS doctors (staff grade and associate specialist doctors)
  • Senior representatives from the royal colleges and faculties

Key conclusions from the research

  • There are diverse views in the profession and wider NHS regarding the equivalence of routes to certification.
  • There is a perception among the profession that the CESR / CEGPR application would benefit from streamlining and simplification.
  • There is a lack of awareness regarding the CESR / CEGPR routes that inevitably leads to some misgivings regarding their robustness.

The overall perception of the profession is that the capability of a doctor is variable and unrelated to route of certification.

However, the profession showed a preference towards CCT as a certificate or qualification over and above CESR/CEGPR and expressed the view that CCT holders may progress further in their careers. However, there is no formal tracking mechanism currently in place to evidence this.

There is a perception, particularly amongst employers, that the CCT can confer better quality assurance and standardisation of capability due to the nature of UK training, thus leading to a preference for this route.

The researchers make a number of related recommendations for the GMC aimed principally at improving both the processes involved in alternative route evaluations and to increase the confidence of the profession and wider NHS in these routes.

Read the full report

Perceptions of CESR/CEGPR routed to registration.