NHS CESR Applications for Clinical Radiology Consultants

  • April 10, 2020

Most overseas radiologists coming to the UK want to attain their CESR in Radiology.

In this article we look at the specialty specific guidance on evidence required for entry onto the Specialist Register for Clinical Radiology. This is entry to the specialist registration with a Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration or CESR.

What is CESR in Clinical Radiology in the NHS?

As a Clinical Radiology specialist, attaining CESR will mean you are qualified to practice at consultant level in the NHS in Clinical Radiology. Have a read through our CESR articles found in the IMG Library to understand a little more.

Do I need FRCR to attain CESR in Clinical Radiology?

Not necessarily. Whilst it is a benefit to attain FRCR, and you may have already attained MRCP or FRCR as your route to GMC registration, you do not necessarily require FRCR to attain CESR in Clinical Radiology. Any doctor wishing to attain Specialist Registration via the CCT route must attain FRCR.

What is the indicative period of training for a CCT in Clinical Radiology?

The indicative period of training for a CCT in Clinical Radiology is five years it is highly unlikely that you would achieve the competencies required for a CCT in a shorter period of time. This training consists of the following:

  • 3 years in Core Training AND 
  • 2 years in Higher Training

During Higher Training, competence is expected to be achieved at Level 1 or Level 2 which indicates the greater degree of expertise to be achieved by those intending to practice in one or more special interest areas. CESR applicants must demonstrate that they have achieved the competencies in each of these areas.

You should refer to the Clinical Radiology Curriculum documentation before you make your application to ensure that you can demonstrate the required competencies.

Submitting Evidence:

Do not submit original documents – this is very important.

All your copies, other than qualifications you’re getting authenticated must be accompanied by a proformas signed by the person who is attesting to the validity and accuracy of your evidence (your verifier). It is very important that you read an explanation of how to do this in the GMC’s important notice about evidence.

Please note you will also need to submit translations of any documents that are not in English and you must ensure the translations you submit meet the GMC translation requirements.

How much evidence should you submit?

The GMC recognises that doctors will often not have all the evidence required for a complete CESR application, often many doctors will start their application and delay starting their application until they are able to gather all the evidence.

The evidence must cover the knowledge, skills and qualifications to demonstrate the required competencies in all areas of the Clinical Radiology Curriculum. If evidence is missing from any one area of the curriculum, then the application will fail.

If you have a piece of evidence that is relevant to more than one domain, do not include multiple copies in your bundle. Instead include one copy and list it in your evidence list under each relevant area, stating that the document is located elsewhere. 

The GMC asks that only evidence that is strictly relevant is sent as it will help them to process the application quicker. The guidance on compiling your evidence will help you to decide what is relevant and what is not – make sure you are reading the latest version on the GMC website – here.

It is important to note that evidence that is more than five years old will be given less weight than more recent evidence, so you may not need to include it. As a general guide, an application for CESR could expect to see around 800-1000 pages of evidence. 

Types of Evidence:

The types of evidence are divided into four different domains, the GMC recommends that you apportion the evidence provided as per the pie chart below:

Please note, you cannot compensate for evidence lacking in one area by providing more evidence in another area.

Key Evidence Requirements – advice from the FRCR’s Equivalence Committee:

  1. Evidence must demonstrate that you have achieved ALL the requirements and competencies as set down in the relevant CCT curriculum. 
  2. Where you have worked in a specialised area for a substantial period of time, evidence will be required to the following effect:
    1. That at one stage in your career you achieved the requirements and competencies of the relevant specialty curriculum
    2. These skills have been maintained within the last five years
    3. Your current specialised practice allows you to meet all of the domains above 
  3. You must submit evidence to demonstrate that you can practise competently and independently across the breadth of the CCT curriculum

Key Evidence Requirements – Summarised:

In summary you are expected to demonstrate competence across the core requirements of the radiology specific content of the curriculum: 

breast, cardiac, emergency radiology, gastro-intestinal, general and non-vascular intervention, head and neck, moledcular imaging, musculoskeletal, neuroradiology, oncological, paediatric imaging, radionuclide radiology, thoracic, uro-gynaecological and vascular radiology, in the relevant technique-based areas (plain film including mammography, CT, US, MRI, nonvascular interventional procedures, fluoroscopy)

You are also expected to demonstrate the equivalent Level 1 and/or Level 2 competencies required for Higher training, in one or more areas of special interests.

Key Documents to submit with your application:

Take a look at the GMC’s SGPC – SSG document to affirm the information above and to understand the key documents recommended by the Royal College of Radiology’s Equivalence Committee.

Make sure to anonymise your evidence:

It is very important to anonymise your evidence before submitting it to the GMC. You must remove the following:

  • All patient identifying details
  • Details of patients’ relatives
  • Details of colleagues that you have assessed, written a reference for, or who have been involved in a complaint you have submitted. This includes:
    • names (first and last)
    • addresses 
    • contact details such as phone numbers or email addresses
    • NHS numbers & other individual patient numbers
    • GMC numbers

In Summary:

If you have any questions or uncertainties, please do not hesitate to get in touch with the IMG Connect team. However, your official point of reference for any queries should the GMC – they can answer and provide the most updated information on CESR applications for overseas Radiologists looking to work as NHS Consultants in Clinical Radiology.

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