Registration Rules and Exemptions
Medical Practitioners Act 2007
The national legislation concerning registration is found under Part 6 of the Medical Practitioners Act 2007 (the Act), amended by the Medical Practitioners (Amendment) Act 2011. The Amendment Act provides for the Supervised Division of the Register.
The Directive that currently governs the recognition of professional qualifications is EU Directive 2005.36.EC. This is transposed into Irish law by S.I. 139 of 2008 (Recognition of Professional Qualifications (Directive 2005/36/EC) Regulations, 2008).
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. 733 of 2011 - Rules Specifying Examinations and Criteria for Registration in the Supervised Division Pursuant to the Medical Practitioners (Amendment) Act 2011
A. Exemptions from the PRES (Pre-Registration) Exam:
Applicants for registration can be exempted from the PRES in order to be registered if they:
- 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
- Are eligible for entry into the Specialist Division
Applicants for general registration can be exempt from the PRES if:
- They are a graduate of an Irish medical school and have completed internship training and been awarded a satisfactory Certificate of Experience (Internship); or
- 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; or
- 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)
- Have been awarded a higher qualification which is listed in the Guide to Registration and have either 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 have completed a minimum of three years in an accredited training programme.
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:
- 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
- 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.