This post is written for International Medical Graduates who wish to work in the UK. This post will guide them about the specialties they should choose during their House Jobs.
Internship, House Job, Foundation Training
Before you read further, it is important to know that House Job is also known as Internship or Foundation Training/Program in the UK.
What is an acceptable pattern of Internship?
At least 12 months of internship with at least 3 months in medicine and at least 3 months in surgery is considered to be an acceptable pattern of internship according to the GMC. Medical and surgical sub-specialties count in medicine and surgery, respectively. For example, paediatrics and OBGYN are counted as medicine and surgery, respectively.
Internships of even a day less than 12 months might not be accepted. Keep in mind that we are allowed to take annual leaves and sick leaves during internships.
Which specialties to choose during Internship?
Based on the above information, please make sure that you include at least 3 months of Medicine and at least 3 months of Surgery in your internship.
To be on the safe side, choose other specialties in a way which would be acceptable to the GMC. Do not include too many specialties with too little duration in your internship. For example, do not choose ENT for a week, ophthalmology for two weeks, etc. Choose any specialty for at least 3 months.
It would be ideal to have 6 months of Medicine and 6 months of Surgery, or 3 months each of General Medicine, Paediatrics (or any other sub-specialty of medicine), General Surgery and OBGYN (or any other sub-specialty of surgery).
The Official Link
You must also check the official link from the GMC’s website to find out the acceptable patterns of internship. You can click here to check the official GMC link.
Why is it important to have an acceptable pattern of internship?
If you do not have an acceptable pattern of internship, you might find it very difficult to find work in the UK for the following reason:
International Medical Graduates who have NOT completed an acceptable pattern of internship and are looking to apply for jobs in the UK, can only apply for Foundation Training in the UK.
It is very difficult to find Foundation Training posts for IMGs, since most of these posts are taken by local graduates in the UK. Therefore, it is always advisable to start working in the UK only after completion of an acceptable internship back home.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. If my internship certificate mentions “Medicine & Allied” and/or “Surgery & Allied”, would the GMC accept it?
Yes, as long as your “Medicine & Allied” and “Surgery & Allied” are for 3 months or more, the GMC would accept it.
2. What if I did not complete my internship?
If you go for your internship now, there will be a gap between your graduation and internship. Thus, you should check with the GMC if you can complete your Internship in your home country or any other country according to any of the GMC’s acceptable patterns. If this is not an option, then, you can only enter training through FY1, which is not easy or advisable, as explained here.
3. What if I completed my internship in my home country or my country of residence, but not according to the GMC’s acceptable pattern of internship?
You should check with the GMC if you can go back to your home country or any other country and complete your internship according to any of the GMC’s acceptable patterns. If this is not an option, then, you can only enter training through FY1, which is not easy or advisable, as explained here.
4. What if there is a gap during my Internship?
Your internship’s acceptance depends entirely on the length of this gap. Gaps of 2 to 4 weeks can be explained with somewhat ease (or unease). But gaps any longer than this can make the GMC ask for a lot of explanations and documentation.
5. What is the longest duration of a gap which the GMC can accept?
There is no way of knowing this. However, I have seen the GMC accepting an internship with four months of gap during the internship. The candidate had to provide a lot of explanations and documentation. You can read Dr. Raheela Mirza’s experience regarding this.
6. What if there is a gap between my graduation and internship?
This also depends entirely on the length of the gap. If you are in this situation, it would be best to post on the Facebook groups to get input from others who have faced the same situation.
7. What if I completed a pre-graduate internship?
If this satisfies the GMC’s criteria, there is a chance that the GMC might accept it. But I have seen the GMC rejecting some and accepting other pre-graduate internships. Therefore, it would be best to post on Facebook groups and take guidance from those who have full GMC registration on the basis of pre-graduate internship.
8. Is it necessary to have 3 months in General Medicine and 3 months in General Surgery or can they be in any field of Medicine or Surgery?
They can be in any field of Medicine or Surgery. But to be on the safe side, it is best to have General Medicine and General Surgery experience.
9. Which sub-specialties should I choose?
Choose sub-specialties based on your future interest. But even if you do not choose them based on your future interest, it will not make a big difference.
10. Can I complete six months of my rotation from one hospital and the other six months from another hospital?