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Member of Royal College of Pediatrics and Child Health (MRCPCH) is a respectable membership. It is a dream qualification for all pediatricians. MRCPCH exam is one of the most sought-after exams by Pediatricians worldwide, and Indian doctors are no exception.
The Pediatricians become full members of the Royal College of Pediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) by completing four separate post-graduate medical exams. This blog post is an ultimate guide to all Indian Pediatricians aspiring to earn MRCPCH.
About MRCPCH in a Nutshell
The General Medical Council (GMC) standards approve the MRCPCH. It is a mandatory qualification for pediatricians to practice in the UK. The latest Research and Evidence-based methods design it. This membership is responsive to changes introduced in training methodologies in the UK.
MRCPCH Exam pattern
The MRCPCH examination pattern has four independent modules. Among them, 3 are theoretical exams, and the final one is a clinical exam. Here are the details of these exams:
- Foundation of Practice (FOP) Theory-Based Exams
- Theory and Science (TOS) Theory-Based Exams
- Apply Knowledge in Practice (AKP) Theory-Based Exams
- MRCPCH Clinical Exams
The aspirants can take up theory-based exams in any order as they are non-sequential. Only on the successful completion of the theory exams candidates are allowed to take up final Clinical exams.
All three theoretical exams are conducted in computer labs. The candidates have three chances to clear each of these three theory exams. Moreover, due to Covid-19 guidelines, candidates have to know about time-to-time changes brought in by the authorities.
The MRCPCH Clinical exam is the final exam to be taken. It is conducted in a hospital. The exam comprises a ‘circuit’ of 12 scenarios. The examiners conducting the exams are experienced pediatricians.
The candidates are examined based on their interactions with children, young adults, and adults roped in for the exam scenarios. During pandemic situations, alternative arrangements are made by the institute to help the candidates to take up the exams in a safer environment.
Clinical Exams: 12 Scenario Circuit (Source: RCPCH)
MRCPH Exam dates 2021 India
In India, the MRCPCH Exam Schedule is as follows:
|Exam||Exam date||Applications open (09:30 UK local time) – date can vary by country and option||Applications close (16:00 UK local time)|
|19 May 2021||Application window closed|
|9 June 2021||1 April 2021|
UK & ROI, India, Malta
UK & ROI online invigilation
Test center openings TBD
|12 April 2021|
|15 September 2021||June 2021||TBD|
|13 October 2021||July 2021||TBD|
The RCPCH currently delivers theory exams in the following places in South Asia and the Far East: Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka.
The complete Exam Fees for candidates from India, Malaysia, Nepal, KSA, UAE, Oman, Mynamar, Sudan, and Singapore is as follows:
|Exam||Exam fee 2021|
|Foundation of Practice (FOP) – single paper||£408|
|Theory and Science (TAS) – single paper||£408|
|FOP and TAS – both papers||£675|
|Applied Knowledge in Practice (AKP)||£780|
The FOP and TAS papers are conducted on the same day. Candidates are allowed to take the exams on the same day or appear for FOP and TAS separately.
MRCPCH Exam requirements
Here is a complete listing of How to take up MRCPCH exams starting from the registration process.
- As per the 2021 Covid Guidelines, theory exams are offered in social distancing maintained test centers and online home-based exams with online invigilation.
- As aforementioned, the 3 Theory Exams
- Foundation of Practice (FOP)
- Theory and Science (TAS)
- Applied Knowledge in Practice (AKP) can be taken in any order
- The entire exam process starts with the registration, which comprises of following steps:
- First, procure an RCHPCH Account
- Next, procure an Exam account
- Here are few quick tips on the application process:
- Candidates have to register for the exam account at least ten working days before the application period opens.
- Candidates should ensure they have booked the right test center with all accessibility needs in place. No changes are allowed once applied.
- Candidates who wish to take online examinations can request all necessary adjustments and facilities to appear for the exams from home.
- Candidates can only apply during the application period, which is usually one week or more. The application period is from 09:30 GMT (UK local time) on the first day and closes at 16:30 GMT on the last day.
- Candidates are advised to use the Chrome browser from Google for better compatibility.
- Dates and locations are subject to change. Candidates can follow the official Twitter handle @rcpch_trainees.
- Steps to Apply Through Dashboard
- First, the Candidates should log in to their account
- Candidates should select the Exam Panel and using the links, and start applying
- Select the mode of exam, either test center-based or Online, through the panel
- Fill the Application form carefully by providing importance to all minute details
- After having satisfaction about the application, candidates are asked to pay the fees by Debit card or Credit Card
- On successful payment, the Candidates will receive an email to confirm their place.
Note: RCPCH authorities urge all the candidates to use their credit or debit cards and avoid using third-party cards to prevent fraudulent transactions.
Candidates should follow above mentioned guidance and for well-organized MRCPCH exam preparation.
How to pass MRCPCH
A well-planned and thought MRCPCH exam preparation is the only way to crack this exam. Here we have compiled few tips from senior pediatricians who are successful in cracking this exam.
The general guidance for all the candidates gains mastery over your Examination Techniques, Revision Techniques, and ability to analyze Strength and Weakness.
The examination question paper comprises of:
- 12 Questions of Extended matching type carrying nine marks each (three per item) •
- 15 Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) worth five marks each (one per item)
- 48 Questions of Best of five types carrying four marks each
Some general guidelines to answer Multiple Choice Questions:
- Read the questions carefully with emphasis on keywords
- Believe your instincts
- Usually, questions will be on topics with ambiguity
- Always beware of double negatives
- Numerical answers are often tricky choose precisely the correct answers.
In extended matching questions, a statement is given, and the candidate is asked to choose from a list.
In the case of Best of Five questions, probable questions look as:
- What is the most common cause?
- What is the best next step?
- Which investigation will likely lead to a diagnosis?
- What is the best advice to give to parents?
- What is the most likely diagnosis?
MRCPCH Clinical Exam Steps
Once the candidates have cleared the three theory exams, they are eligible for taking MRCPCH clinical exams. The objective of the clinical exams is to ensure the candidates have competency as per the standards of clinical skills expected by ST4.
RCPCH expects candidates to demonstrate proficiency in various traits:
- history taking and management planning
- establishing rapport with both parents and children
- physical examination
- child development
- clinical judgment
- recognition of acute illness
- knowledge of pediatrics and child health
- ethical practice.
Those aspiring to be pediatricians in India should have an MBBS degree. If they qualify for MRCPCH from the UK, they have career opportunities in India. Though MRCPCH exams are considered one of the toughest exams clearing this examination provides good career prospects in India as pediatricians. Most importantly, MRCPCH exams are recognized by the Medical Council of India (MCI) and are treated on par with MCI post-graduation degrees.
If all aspirants plan a proper schedule and carry out intensive training, they can get qualified as Pediatricians in a short period. The MRCPCH pediatrics exam is recognized in India, UK, Ireland, Singapore, Most countries in Gulf, Europe, and Asia.
Clearing the MRCPCH exam provides budding and experienced pediatricians a plethora of career opportunities. The practitioners can have access to both clinical and educational resources. Some of the salient benefits RCPCH portal has published are:
- Members have full access to the child protection portal. The portal provides essential online resources on child protection and safeguarding.
- They have access to a monthly academic journal.
- Doctors offer handheld guidance to continue their education through Continuing Professional Development scheme.
- Members can avail of Discounted rates on various courses and events offered by the institute. Even the flagship annual conference is available at a rebated price.
- RCPCH compass is an initiative to provide free access to Learning Management Systems.
- With the TOTUM Pro card, more than 200 UK discounts are available.
The MRCPCH Clinical Premier Training offered by Texila American University equips students from India to gear up with confidence to take up MRCPCH pediatric exams.
The program is the hospital-based fellowship offered to MBBS students of India. Here the students are allowed to appear for the clinical training in one of the hospitals affiliated with TAU. Importantly all necessary rotations guidance is given by the Royal College of Pediatrics & Child Health. We wish MBBS candidates from India can reap the advantages of Clinical Premier Training and earn the membership of RCPCH.