Useful Guidelines!

Dear seekers of UK Training!

Please go through these pages and give me your feedback. Hopefully these guidelines should open a few doors for you! If you find any other useful sites, I can probably add it or create a link to it There are many overseas candidates who have secured jobs in the UK,for you to approach for guidance! Please do not keep asking Consultants for guidance.

Consultants in the UK don't like to be contacted directly. This puts them off straight away and you start off on a wrong note.

Please ask your sponsor in your institution, to get in touch with one of us here.

I suggest that the Senior consultants in your parent institution can form a Selection Committee and select the best candidates for Training in UK and correspond with us. On my part, I have a few of our Old Students here who might be able to help if they are willing and able.

Sort out your paperwork before you approach anyone i.e. Royal College and GMC

Try to get Hepatitis B immunisation and Antibody titre certificate before coming here (Occasionlly some hospitals don't accept the Antibody levels certificate from Overseas, so you may have to repeat the test)

If you can get police verifiction from overseas, it might save you time.

If you qualified in India, try to do DNB wherever possible because it is a Nationwide exam and is likely to be more uniform whereas the MD is more variable

You should try to do 1 Year out of Anaesthesia as this is increasingly expected by the Royal College of Anaesthetists(RCA)

I will keep adding more guidelines as time passes. Feel free to ask me questions whenever the answers are not available on any of the links provided. I will do my best to answer them.

For Visas, do not misrepresent your visit. Remember that the Immigration authorities write every word that you utter and can use it against you if you try to change your visa status. I have even known them to send people back to their parent country, even after they have got a job, merely because they said initially, that they were just visiting.

Not to forget the Social aspects! Once you are in the UK, you will need a lot of information about accommodation, banking, gas, electricity, cars, etc. A kind gentleman has compiled links for a lot of these essentials for living in the UK. Living in the UK click on this link to go to the site.

Another site that is providing all round information to Overseas Doctors is created by Dr Senthil, SpR in Leeds

Clinical Attachment

(Click on the link to go to the sample contract form) is granted by the College Tutor based on the capacity of the Hospital and the Institutional policy in force at the time. Remember it is not something we can "give" at our will and pleasure.

Clinical attachments must be arranged between you and the hospital. The Royal College of Anaesthetists cannot assist in this process. Time spent in clinical attachments cannot be recognised towards UK training

Please do not ask me to arrange a Clinical Attachment for you. I will not be responding to any emails asking me to do this.

Never Never register with Locum Agencies when you first arrive! You can only do Locum Appointments for Training (LAT), approved by the RCA Your GMC Limited Registration will be granted for a specific post on specified dates in a named hospital.

If you work for an agency moving between hospitals you

will risk the GMC withdrawing you Limited Registration.

If you want to take up a Locum Appointment for Training (LAT) post this

cannot be done through an agency. LAT posts have to be approved by the local Postgraduate Dean and are advertised in the medical press eg The British Medical Journal.

Locum Appointments for Training (LAT). Remember that most consultants who are willing to sponsor you, have not done any Locums other than in the hospital that they work in.

Locum jobs get you the worst lists and can land you into trouble and finish your career off before you even start.

It also uses up your Permit Free period of Training. You will also permanently lose the support of any Consultants who are willing to sponsor you.

A lot of people don't seem to know the training structure in the UK.

General information is available on the RCA website publication pages in The CCST in Anaesthesia Part I and the detailed syllabus is contained in The CCST in Anaesthesia Parts II to IV.

Go through the Primary FRCA syllabus and read books like the one by Smith & Aitkenhead (which describes Anaesthesia exactly as it is practised in the UK).

Practice talking and answering questions. Ask your teachers to conduct mock interviews and mock viva's. There is a lot of preparation involved and this in turn involves a lot of hard work for the sponsors (both in India and UK) and the sponsored.

A lot of us don't do well in Interviews because we don't practice. It is a lot harder than we think!

Try these links for tips on Interview techniques and CV writing:

Useful tips for Interviews

Some advice is also available on the FAQ page (click on the link to take you there)

Fresh Gas Flow is a website by Dr Prasanna Tilakaratna. Please go through the "Anaesthesia Scan" which would be useful for problem solving in Interviews and exams.

CV Writing!

Click on the links below to go to some useful sites which give tips on CV writing:

Indi_go Click on this link to go to the Yahoo Group of Indi_go. You have to join the group (Free!) to access the Forum. In the main menu on the left, click on "Files" and you can see some expert advice on CVs


CV Templates


Many schools of Anaesthesia now have a mentoring system, in which a Consultant is the Mentor (friend, philosopher and guide) to one or more trainees.

This helps the trainees approach a designated person who guides them professionally and if need be outside the professional circle as well.

This makes it easier in our stressful specialty to cope with the stress and strain at work and outside.

How to best utilise your training

After your initial acclimatisation, get hold of one very good and sympathetic SHO or SpR and hang on to them!

Follow them around on lists and more importantly during on calls. All SHOs have to undergo a Competency based assessment before they do solo On Calls.

Therefore if you shadow someone good during your breaking in period, you will much more capable of comfortably doing your on calls when the time comes.

Yes, it is a little extra hard work, but well worth it.


Regarding the English Test, I have no personal experience. So speak to people who have actually taken the test. What I believe is that most of us Overseas Doctors, are good at written English and spoken English (having an accent does not mean we can't "speak" properly). Speaking well, is more about vocabulary and grammar and construction of sentences than a British accent (Natural or acquired)

I strongly recommend making an effort at speaking to friends and colleagues in English and also listening to the Radio, especially group discussions. Very few in UK speak the classical BBC News kind of English.

Preparation is the key to any exam of any nature, so be prepared!


There is a British International Doctors' Association (BIDA) which helps with Induction, Mentorship and generally provides support to Overseas Doctors.

British Association of Indian Anaesthetists (BAOIA)

The British Association of Indian Anaesthetists BAOIA which has its own Web Page for Anaesthesia Trainees from India.

British Associations of Physicians of Indian Origin

BAPIOClick on the BAPIO logo to go to the website of the British Association of Phycians (doctors) of Indian Origin