Case study 3 – Dr Garcia

This case study will assist doctors who:

  • have had a break in practice of between 2–5 years
  • have not practised for 60% of the time since they graduated
  • are unable to provide evidence of continuing professional development (CPD) or a clinical attachment or observership.


Dr Garcia was awarded a medical degree in July 2013. Dr Garcia applied for full registration with a licence to practise in February 2017 but had not yet moved to the UK.

Between September 2013 and September 2014 he worked at a clinic in Columbia but had not practised since leaving this post.

Dr Garcia moved to Spain in November 2014. While living in Spain he worked in an administrative role in a GP surgery. This did not require registration with the Consejo General de Colegios Oficales de Medicos (Spanish Medical Council).

As part of his application Dr Garcia:

  • submitted a supportive reference from the manager who supervised his administrative role and confirmed that the role was a full time post for 24 months. The reference includes positive feedback from colleagues
  • provided evidence to show that he has taken steps to arrange a clinical attachment
  • explained that he kept his knowledge and skills up to date by undertaking CPD throughout the break in practice; however he did not submit evidence of courses completed or copies of any certificates
  • provided a certificate of good standing from the Tribunal Nacional de Etica Medica (Columbian Medical Council).

What did the decision maker take into account?

The decision maker took into account the criteria and guidance on breaks in practice. In particular:

  • at the point that Dr Garcia applied for registration, three years and seven months had elapsed since he graduated. Due to the break in practice between November 2014 and February 2017 (when he applied for registration), he did not meet either part of the criteria. He has not practised for 60% of the time since graduation and does not have six months practice in the 12 months immediately before his application
  • as Dr Garcia did not meet our criteria, the decision maker considered whether he had submitted evidence to demonstrate that he had mitigated the break in practice in accordance with our guidance.

What was our decision?

Dr Garcia did not meet either aspect of our criteria and has not provided evidence to demonstrate that he has mitigated the break by taking steps to keep his knowledge and skills up to date. The decision maker therefore decided to refuse to grant his application for registration with a licence to practise.