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Registration Rules and Exemptions

Exemptions from the PRES (Pre-Registration) Exam:

Applicants for registration can be exempted from the PRES in order to be registered if they:

  1. Were registered in Ireland (in any Division of the Register) prior to the introduction of new Registration Rules in January 2011. Medical practitioners who were registered in Ireland prior to the new Registration Rules are not normally required to pass the PRES if they apply to restore their name to the Register having been unregistered for a period of time; or
  2. Are eligible for entry into the Specialist Division
  3. They are a graduate of an Irish medical school and have completed internship training and been awarded a satisfactory Certificate of Experience (Internship); or
  4. They are a graduate of an EU medical school and are entitled to automatic recognition of their professional qualifications under EU legislation or, they would be entitled if they were an EU citizen.

Applicants for general registration can be exempt from the PRES if:

  1. They have been awarded a document which is considered by the Medical Council to be at least the equivalent of a Certificate of Experience (Internship Certificate). Council recognises internships in the following countries as equivalent of an Irish internship;
  • Australia - provide letter from regulatory body or clinical site confirming internship details
  • New Zealand - provide letter from regulatory body or clinical site confirming internship details
  • Pakistan –provide Certificate of Experience issued by the PMDC. Please note that applicant must have commenced their internship after 31st December 2008 and the rotations comply with the Medical Council’s policy on length of internship and approved rotations.**
  • South Africa - provide letter from HPCSA or clinical site confirming internship details. Please note that applicant must have commenced their internship from 1st July 2006
  • Sudan – provide letter from regulatory body or clinical site confirming internship details
  • Malaysia - provide letter from regulatory body or clinical site confirming internship details

The Council has accepted the recommendations from the Adjudication Group that internships in the following countries are not equivalent;

  • India
  • Trinidad & Tobago

**Please refer to the Medical Council’s Guidelines on Medical Education and Training for Interns

2. Have been awarded a higher qualification which is listed in the Guide to Registration and have:

  • undertaken an internship of at least twelve months which comprised of a minimum of three months in medicine in general and three months in surgery in general. OR
  • completed a minimum of three years in an accredited training programme. Applicant should provide a letter confirming satisfactory completion of a three year programme from the body responsible for overseeing the training programme eg a post graduate training body. Only one single training programme will be considered for this purpose.

IMPORTANT: All applicants for general registration must either meet the eligibility requirements under Categories General 1, 2 or 3 OR have been awarded a document which is considered to be at least the equivalent of a Certificate of Experience (Internship Certificate) OR pass or be exempted from the PRES. This is different to the eligibility requirements for trainee specialist registration.

Applicants for registration can be exempt from the PRES in order to be registered in Trainee Specialist Division if they have been awarded a Certificate of Experience (Internship) or equivalent or higher and:

  1. Have been awarded a Higher Qualification which is recognised for the purposes of exemption from the PRES (see Appendix I of the Guide to Registration or Appendix A of the Registration Rules); or
  2. Have been offered a place in a higher specialist training programme which is recognised by the Medical Council for the purpose of exemption. The programmes currently recognised for this exemption are listed in Appendix J of the Guide to Registration.

Registration Rules

Rules determining entry into the Register are made under Section 11 of the Act. The Rules are enacted by Statutory Instrument. The Rules (S.I.s) currently in force are:

1. S.I. 417 of 2011 - Medical Council Registration Rules
2. S.I. 208 of 2013 - Rules Specifying Examinations and Criteria for Registration in the Supervised Division Pursuant to the Medical Practitioners (Amendment) Act 2011