As of February 2006, there is a new National process for application to GP Vocational Training Schemes (GPVTS). This article looks at the different stages in the process and how you can improve your chances of securing a place.
The first part of the process is to look at the National GP Recruitment website and check the Vacancies to see which Deanery has suitable places. After doing this, you must apply ONLINE to up to 3 Deaneries. The nice thing about the new process is that you apply only once, no more photocopying a hundred pages and sending it to 3 different places. As long as you meet the Eligibility criteria you can apply. The basic criteria are:
You must hold a recognised primary medical qualification – MB,BS or MB,BCH or MD from US
Have GMC registration OR have passes PLAB1 and PLAB 2 and be eligible for UK GMC registration at time of application. Have evidence of approved training (completed VTR2 forms) if applying for a scheme shorter than 3 years. If you meet these criteria, you can apply online,You will need a valid email address, GMC registration status, details of past experience (including any career gaps), dates of your primary medical qualification and details of three referees (they MUST have email addresses).After submission, there are 4 stages to the selection process:
STAGE 1 (long-list)
You 1st choice deanery will check your details and as long as you meet the basic criteria your application WILL be accepted to enter Stage 2.
STAGE 2 (short-list)
Stage 2 is an examination with 2 parts. The first part is an MCQ exam consisting of True/False MCQs (the majority of questions), Single Best Answers, and Extended Matching Questions. The level is that expected of a PRHO or Foundation 1 doctor at the end of the first year. The make up of the questions includes general medicine / general surgery / therapeutics (the majority), and the rest is made up of speciality questions from ENT, ophthamology, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics, psychiatry, dermatology, orthopaedics and trauma and rheumatology. The exam lasts 2 hours. The second part of the exam is a written exercise of short essay questions. You will have 7 questions, each maximum 250 words. These will cover various topics to gauge how well you meet the National Person Specification for GP Training.
Stage 2 assessments are being conducted between 8 – 14 March 2006 all over the UK and you can request a date online if you get to this stage.
London and KSS deaneries have already had an MCQ exam, so those applying there will only be asked to do the essay paper. Northwestern deanery have a separate two stage process and details are on their website.
STAGE 3 (selection)
The best candidates from the Stage 2 process will be invited to an Assessment centre date for Stage 3. References will also be checked at this stage. Each Deanery will set its own Stage 3 assessment, and details will be provided to successful candidates. Most Deaneries will use a variety of assessment to include simulated consultations, prioritisation questions, and group work and communication skills stations. Some deaneries may have an interview at this stage.
STAGE 4 (allocation and offer)
The best candidates at stage 3 will be offered a job according to their ranking, availability of jobs and their previous training. Candidates that get through Stage 3 that cannot be offered a suitable post in their 1st choice of scheme may be offered a post through Clearing if one is available.
If you are applying for GP VTS this year, there is free advice and information on the whole process, as well as free practice MCQs for the MCQ exam at www.gpvts.info This is a free educational resource developed by nomad an RXPG member who is already on a GPVTS.