International Fellowship Programs : Road to UK

International Fellowship Programs

International Fellowship Programs : Road to UK

College of Physicians and Surgeons Pakistan (CPSP) is offering International Fellowship programs in a number of hospitals in the United Kingdom. It started from Ireland but now these placements are being gradually expanded in England.

I have tried to give a step wise experience of my selection process. To be eligible to apply for these positions there are some requirements. These positions are available at Junior and senior clinical fellow levels. For junior fellows , you need IELTS + IMM and senior fellows require IELTS + FCPS.  GMC (General Medical Council) requirements for IELTS (International English Language Testing) an Overall score of 7 with minimum of 7 in each module.

The online form has to be submitted with all the details and can be found on the CPSP website. You will receive an acknowledgement email and will be informed further in due time.

After submitting the application, a proper CV should be assembled containing all the relevant information including experience, achievements, workshops, conferences and research work. They do come handy at the time of the interview and the choice of rotation that they may offer.

There are a number of considerations to be taken in this regard. The training in UK will be counted towards the FCPS program and the placement is for a total of two years.

The interview may be held at your regional CPSP center via video link  or in Islamabad. I got 2 interviews, one was in Islamabad (face to face) and the other was at Peshawar via video link. There is no specific preparation for the interview. However, there are somethings you can do to go with some level of preparation rather than being completely blank. There is a video of 30 medical ethics based questions of USMLE. One should go through that. Also topics like Good Medical Practice in UK, Clinical Governance and Clinical Audit should be given a read. They do expect you to have a good idea of what you are going to embark upon.

You need to take NOC if you are a government employee from your health department.

The GMC now requires the primary medical Qualification (PMQ) to be verified by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates(ECFMG).

PMDC good standing certificate should also be ready by the time GMC registration process is initiated as its required at almost every other step when they ask for documents.

Electronic Portfolio of International Credentials (EPIC) Account needs to be created and the MBBS degree is to be uploaded here for verification. They will do the necessary verification from the Student Affairs Section of your medical school. Making the EPIC account and uploading a document for verification would cost you around 210 $. People say that this process can take up to 90 days but mine was done in less than 2 weeks.

The following documents would be required further as part of the application process.

  1. Passport
  2. Primary Medical Qualification (PMQ) which is the MBBS degree
  3. IELTS certificate / GMC certificate
  4. Certificate of Good Standing (COGS) from Pakistan Medical and Dental Council
  5.  2 References (they mainly require your supervisor or hospital head)

Once the ECFMG and EPIC verification is completed then you will be prompted to apply for GMC registration and would be required to submit the required fee which is around 75,000 PKR. The GMC will require a number of your documents as evidence. Its a good idea to scan all your original documents and save them in a file separately so that you can upload them at will when they ask for it.

By the time you have submitted your GMC application,your Certificate of sponsorship would most probably be finalized. Its the trust obtaining a work permit for you. You have to forward it to both the GMC as part of the GMC application as well as for VISA application, later.

GMC then would invite you for an ID check after the application process is completed and processed. Your sponsor will direct you when to book that appointment. Try to chose a time in the afternoon i.e at 2 : 30 PM, preferably. So, by this time you are done with your GMC application. They will require that you produce the original documents when you come for an ID check. They will also convey which documents in particular would be required.

Next, your sponsor will direct you to apply for VISA application. The application has to be submitted online. Make sure to enter the correct VISA type and if you have any dependents then their VISA type should be identical to yours. Do get the application checked by a third person to avoid clerical errors. By this time your TB certificate should also be ready. International health surcharge and VISA fee in combination will require approximately 120,000 for each application. Print the relevant receipts and prepare the necessary documents. Do not staple any documents together as at the VISA application center GERRYS Islamabad , they need to be scanned and a stapled document can get torn in the process. The following is an exhaustive list of documents that you should have ready at the time of your VISA application appointment at GERRYS.


  1. Certificate of Sponsorship
  2. Printed copy of online Visa Application form
  4. GMC appointment confirmation email
  5. Immigration health surcharge payment evidence emails
  6. Visa application payment evidence emails
  7. Confirmation of scholarship award by CPSP
  8. Placement letter from the international trust confirming placement
  9. PMDC Good Standing certificate
  10. PMDC permanent registration certificate
  11. Final Medical Diploma/ Degree
  12. Experience Certificate from the relevant Hospital
  13. IELTS certificate
  14. Birth Certificate of child/ children
  15. Form B ID of child with English translation
  16. NIKAH NAMA with English translation
  17. Marriage Certificate
  18. Family Registration Certificate
  19. Passport with National ID card copy
  20. Passport of wife with ID card copy (Dependent 1)
  21. Passport of child/ children (Dependent  2)
  22. Police Clearance certificate
  23. Tuberculosis Certificate
  24. Photos (45 * 35 mm)

At GERRYS , try to reach early in the morning. They will check all your documents, get the biometrics and photograph done and you leave your passports there.  You will be asked to submit the processing fee. And that is it. You will receive an email after a few days confirming that your application has reached the home office UK. After approximately 2 weeks time you ll be notified to collect your passports. You can also send an authorized person with your original ID cards and copies and form B in case of a child along with a proper authorization letter. The person being authorized must also carry his/her original NIC.  Thats it. Now you can book your tickets , start packing and plan your UK trip…

When the VISA and passports arrive then they will contain all the details of your stay duration. As its a work VISA, so it has to be verified by the Protectorate. Get it stamped from their office with a total fee of 7200 Rs. the fee has to be deposited at 3 different banks. This includes insurance fee as well. Its a tiresome process and requires one whole day. The documentation requires submitting an online form and signing an affidavit. Take all the relevant documents including Passports with photocopies, NIC, VISA, Certificate of sponsorship, photographs and orginal documents file. Previously NICOP (National ID Card for Overseas Pakistanis) was a requirement for Protector stamp but now it has been eliminated, thankfully !!

This is my experience so far as I can remember. I shall be updating this article further but this is the gist of it….

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