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With the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Federation of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of the UK has canceled its examinations in the UK and all international locations until September 2020. With the pandemic situation showing improvements and limits in restrictions, the RCP exams have been postponed to various dates with tentative schedules. The centers will not be accepting new applications but will be prioritizing candidates who had their exams canceled earlier due to the pandemic.
Back on March 25, 2020, the Royal Colleges have announced on their websites that as a result of the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, the Federation of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of the UK had taken a tough but necessary decision to cancel all Royal College examinations in the UK and internationally from Monday, March 16 until September 2020.
Established in 1859, the Federation of Royal Colleges of Physicians of the UK aims to support physicians’ education and training over the years, but as we know that the COVID-19 pandemic has raised uncertainties related to what will happen around exams and training are causing considerable anxiety among examinees.
A statement on their website stated, “we are working to provide clear positions on all aspects between ourselves and the training systems in the UK. Trainee welfare is very important to us, and we hope that the following document provides clarity at an uncertain time and will allow trainees to plan for the coming months. Given the rapidly changing nature of things, though, even this advice may need to change.”
But as the situation improved over the weeks in the UK, with the restriction loosened, the Royal College (UK) Examination Programs have been postponed to various dates for the following degrees. Please note that this information provided below is tentative and may be subject to change upon the discretion of the respective authorities.
Some of the centers expected to run in the upcoming diet, although they will not be accepting new applicants as they prioritize spaces to candidates allocated to the previously canceled exams. The UK centers currently expected to run in the upcoming diet for the following reviews are as follows:
Here, let us compile the last known dates and instructions for your knowledge for the various Royal College examinations.
- MRCP: Member of Royal College of Physicians
As of June 24, 2020, the official site stated that the application period for the 2020/3 diet of PACES in the UK would open on Monday, July 20, 2020.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the site stated that there would be a limited number of spaces in this diet. As a result, they will not be able to accept applications from candidates who are not currently living/working in the UK.
The report also highlighted that many of our international test centers would not be able to run the PACES exams with the upcoming diet due to the continuing global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
|Ajman||Nov 24–26, 2020|
|Hong Kong||Oct 05–10, 2020|
|Hyderabad||Nov 27–29, 2020|
|New Delhi||Dec 11–13, 2020|
|Singapore||Nov 19–23, 2020|
- MRCS: Member of Royal College of Surgeons
The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh announced that the September 2020 MRCS Part A examination would be presented remotely as an online assessment. Consequently, this examination’s capacity will no longer be limited by COVID-19 restrictions, and candidates will be able to sit the test without the requirement to travel to an examination center. However, it is to be noted that there are no changes in the format and syllabus of the examination.
The MRCS Part A exams will take place on September 15, 2020 only, and those who are part of the April 2020 diet will also be able to attend this test. International candidates will have to contact the host college regarding the changes and alternative arrangements.
- MRCOG: Member of Royal College of Obstetrics & Gynaecology
The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists stated that all their exam centers are under review due to the COVID-19 pandemic and exams may be subjected to cancellation with fee reimbursement to assure the safety of staff and candidates while the Part 1 examination will take place on Monday, September 28, 2020.
- FRCR: Fellowship of Royal College of Radiologists
In an announcement post, the Royal College of Radiologists stated that the COVID-19 pandemic has made it necessary to implement new changes in the delivery of examinations for 2020 steps. These include limiting to UK-based candidates due to restrictions while international students will only be able to take up the exam after 2021.
However, the online applications for September and October 2020 examinations are open momentarily and close at 16:00 on July 24, 2020, while Online applications for December 2020 and January 2021 are said to open in October.
- MRCPCH: Member of Royal College of Pediatrics & Child Health
The Royal College of Pediatrics and Child Health stated in their resource section that they had moved the date of their UK clinical Exam from late October to November 19-29, 2020, and all the overseas exams except for Hong Kong had been postponed or canceled until further notice.