Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration

Doctors who haven’t completed a GMC approved programme of training but can show they have knowledge, skills and experience equivalent to the approved curriculum for your specialty may be able to apply for a Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration (CESR)

The CESR application is made to the GMC and any queries about general application matters including legislation, forms, documentation, process and fees should be referred to the GMC. The GMC website contains a wealth of information and guidance about submitting a CESR application.

The JRCPTB and its Specialist Advisory Committees (SACs) have produced advice for CESR applicants in the physicianly specialties. This includes:

Changes to the curricula and implications on CESR applications

As a result of drivers for change such as the Shape of Training review, a new model of physician training was developed to meet future healthcare needs of patients. Internal Medicine Training (IMT) stage 1 forms the first three years of post-foundation training, replacing Core Medical Training (CMT). For the main specialties supporting acute medical care - identified as group 1 specialties - an indicative 12 months of further Internal Medicine (IM stage 2) will be integrated flexibly with specialty training in a dual training programme. This model enhances training in internal medicine to prepare doctors for the challenge of managing acutely unwell medical patients, who may also have complex presentations based around chronic disease and comorbidities.

In addition, the GMC introduced new standards for the development and design of postgraduate medical curricula in 2017 which required new curricula describing generic, shared and specialty-specific outcomes. Curricula must also be mapped to the GMC's generic professional capabilities framework which sets out the essential generic capabilities needed for safe, effective and high quality medical care in the UK.

Group 1 specialties

New curricula for group 1 specialties include generic, specialty and clinical internal medicine learning outcomes known as capabilities in practice (CiPs). Applicants via the CESR route will need to demonstrate all capabilities as described in the curriculum. By demonstrating these capabilities a successful applicant will be awarded an additional CESR in internal medicine.

There is a separate curriculum for General Internal Medicine (to be renamed Internal Medicine) and it will be possible for an applicant to apply for a CESR in GIM/IM.

Group 2 specialties

Group 2 specialties will not dual train in internal medicine and the curricula do not include the internal medicine capabilities.

Transition period for CESR applications

The JRCPTB and the GMC has agreed a transition policy for CESR applicants to reflect the significance of the changes to the curricula for many of the physician curricula. This will allow applicants to apply against the previous curriculum for a transition period beyond publication of the new curricula. The transition period considers the notice CESR applicants will be given of the new curricula requirements and the significance of the curricular changes. This will range from two to three years following publication of the curricula, depending on the degree of change to the specialty curriculum. The previous curriculum will be retired on the deadline date.

The transition period and deadline for each specialty are given below.

Group 1 specialtiesTransition periodTransition deadline
Acute Internal Medicine2 years 31 July 2023
Cardiology3 years30 Oct 2024
Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics2 years31 Jan 2024
Endocrinology and Diabetes Mellitus2 years31 Oct 2023
Gastroenterology and Hepatology2 years31 Oct 2023
Genitourinary Medicine3 years31 July 2024
Geriatric Medicine2 years31 Aug 2023
Infectious Diseases2 years31 May 2023
Neurology3 years31 Aug 2024
Palliative Medicine3 years30 Oct 2024
Renal Medicine2 years31 Oct 2023
Respiratory Medicine2 years31 Oct 2023
Rheumatology3 years31 Aug 2024
Stroke Medicine2 years31 Aug 2023
Tropical Medicine2 years31 May 2023


Group 2 specialtiesTransition periodTransition deadline
Allergy (Allergy and Clinical Immunology)3 years31 July 2024
Audio vestibular Medicine2 years 30 June 2023
Aviation and Space Medicine2 years 31 Jan 2024
Clinical Genetics2 years 30 June 2023
Clinical Neurophysiology2 years 30 June 2023
Dermatology2 years 30 June 2023
Haematology2 years 30 June 2023
Immunology (Allergy, Clinical and Laboratory Immunology)3 years31 July 2024
Infectious Diseases2 years 30 June 2023
Medical Oncology2 years 30 June 2023
Medical Ophthalmology2 years 30 June 2023
Nuclear Medicine2 years 30 June 2023
Paediatric Cardiology2 years 30 June 2023
Pharmaceutical Medicine2 years 30 June 2023
Rehabilitation Medicine2 years 31 May 2023
Sport and Exercise Medicine2 years 31 May 2023
Tropical Medicine2 years 31 May 2023


We have complied a list of helpful FAQs regarding changes to physician training curricula and what it means for specialist registration applications. Click here to download.