English language assessments

We might receive concerns about your knowledge of English from your employers or from patients. If we do, we may ask you to:

  • take an English language assessment
  • send us evidence of your language skills, eg details of exam results, such as a recent primary medical qualification that has been taught and examined in English.

What does the assessment involve?

You will need to take an English language assessment. The two test systems we accept are:

You have up to 90 days to complete the test and send the results to us.

Where can I take the tests? 

You can take the IELTS test at test centres authorised by the British Council in the UK or overseas. For more information about the test, see the see the British Council website.

You can take the OET at test centres the OET have authorised in the UK or overseas. For more information about the test, see the OET website.

How much does the assessment cost?

You'll need to pay the test centre upfront for the cost of the test. But if we've formally told you to complete a language assessment, we'll reimburse you once you send us your receipt.

Do you need to take the assessment?

If you refuse to take an assessment or fail to complete the assessment within 90 days, we may refer you to the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service (MPTS) for a medical practitioners tribunal to consider whether action is required on your registration.

Once we get your assessment results, two of our senior decision makers will consider your case. They'll consider your results as well as other evidence gathered during our investigation. They could then decide to:

  • conclude the case with no further action
  • refer the case for a medical practitioners tribunal hearing at the MPTS
  • offer you undertakings.