Medicine recruitment: Building a career in the NHS

Medicine doctor

Medical doctors make up the majority of doctors in the NHS. There’s never a shortage of NHS Medicine jobs for international doctors and IMGs. This broad heading covers many different fields of medicine and specialties of doctors, all of which are essential across almost all clinical care pathways.

If you’re an international doctor trying to find an NHS job, here’s everything you need to know about building your career in Medicine with the UK’s National Health Service, as well as how we here at Remedium can help you take your first steps.

What medicine specialties exist within the NHS doctor workforce?

There are medicine vacancies across the NHS for all manner of specialties and disciplines. Mainly they fall into two broad categories, Acute Medicine and General Medicine.

Acute Medicine is essential for treating patients with urgent medical emergencies. Established in the early 00s as its own dedicated field, many hospitals both in the NHS and globally now have their own Acute Medical Units. The conditions Acute Medical Doctors assess, diagnose, and treat are usually complex and/or life-threatening. It isn’t to be confused with Emergency Medicine, which exclusively deals with patients from Accident and Emergency (the NHS of course employs thousands of Emergency Medicine Doctors too).

General Medicine is broader but no less important. As the name suggests, General Medicine covers a wide range of disciplines. Some examples include Cardiology, Endocrinology and Diabetes, Renal Medicine, Respiratory Medicine, Gastroenterology, and more. Some NHS doctors in general medicine specialise in one of these areas, others have a broader knowledge base and work in general wards. Broadly speaking the conditions doctors of general medicine treat are long-term, non-complex, or non-life-threatening, but that’s far from always the case.

These terms are incredibly broad though, and many types of medicine specialism exist in the NHS. For example, Paediatric Medicine and Geriatric Medicine are incredibly specified and important fields. The short answer is that there’s no shortage of medicine NHS vacancies for international doctors and IMGs since there’s no area of healthcare that doesn’t require their expertise.

What qualifications do international doctors in medicine need to get a job in the NHS?

There’s no shortage of entryways for Doctors seeking an NHS position, but there are a few key documents and qualifications that need to be in place throughout all of them. Ready to start applying for NHS doctor jobs? Generally speaking, procuring any NHS job as an international medical doctor will require before putting themselves forward for vacancies:

-Doctors working in medicine require Membership of the Royal College of Physicians or MRCP. This postgraduate qualification is necessary to be eligible for GMC registration (which is itself a requirement for practicing as a doctor in the UK).

-If you’re in Emergency Medicine specifically, you’ll need MRCEM, which is similar to the MRCP but from the Royal College of Emergency Medicine. It’s an entirely distinct and separate qualification that’s geared exclusively toward Emergency Medicine.

-FRCP is also acceptable, and many higher-level consultants or SAS doctors gain Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians after ten years of being an RCP member.  

-Alternatively, there are routes like PLAB, USMLE, or similar. However, these are considered less prestigious than MRCP.

-A recognised English language qualification such as OET or IELTS.

-Once the above are in place, the next stage is registration with the General Medical Council (GMC), which is required to practice medicine in the UK.

-Once you’re eligible for GMC membership you can start seeking and applying for NHS jobs, as well as arranging necessary documentation to legally live and work in the UK, such as a UK Health and Care Worker Visa.

Membership with the GMC is essential for any doctors working in the UK, as it’s the regulatory body overseeing all licenced medical practitioners in the UK. You don’t have to be a fully-enrolled GMC member to apply for positions, but you do have to be eligible for membership by having the above in place. The above is of course on top of relevant experience and education for each role.

Why choose the NHS for your career as a doctor in medicine?

Thousands of international doctors and IMGs choose the NHS as an employer every year, across all fields of medicine. There’s a reason, too. The NHS is the world’s first national health service and a leading employer in healthcare and medicine. Medical doctors are an essential part of the NHS workforce, and as such it’s a position that’s highly respected both by colleagues and patients.

Medicine doctors in the NHS can experience great success with strong communication skills and the ability to lead a multidisciplinary team. So long as these are in place there’s almost no ceiling to what they can achieve. The development and progression opportunities presented by the NHS are almost unrivaled globally, and the culture of the UK is one of the safest and most secure in the world. Building a career in any nation with any employer takes work, but the UK NHS provides one of the most solid foundations possible and the tools to realise your long-term career goals as a medicine doctor.

I’m an international doctor ready to work in the UK. How do I find an NHS medicine job?

With Remedium finding an NHS, job has been made easier than ever for thousands of international doctors. We’ve placed doctors into permanent positions for all kinds of medicine, from Acute and General through to specialist Respiratory and Cardiology consultants. Our expert onboarding team is available for 24/7 support for everything from Visa applications to relocating to the UK (via our award-winning Red Carpet Platform).

If you’re ready to start building your career as an NHS doctor in any specialism of medicine, register your details with us today. One of our expert Medicine Recruiters will reach out with a bespoke package of available vacancies, as well as advice and guidance on getting yourself NHS-ready (from applying to roles to successfully passing interviews). 

Looking for more info? Speak to our team

Spencer Bernstein

Divisional Manager - Theatres/Psych

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