This section covers some helpful advice for those looking to seek certification equivalence.

In order to work in a substantive consultant post in the UK, doctors must be on the Specialist Register of the UK General Medical Council [GMC]. 

Specialists who trained both in and outside the EEA or completed a non-European recognised specialist training programme within the EEA can apply to the GMC for a Certificate of Eligibility for Specialist Registration [CESR] for Intensive Care Medicine. Please note that there is no 'direct entry' onto the GMC Specialist Register for Intensive Care Medicine (as there is for larger specialties such as anaesthesia); even if doctors qualified in the EEA, they must still undertake the CESR process. This is because ICM is only recognised as a standalone specialty in a small number of countries. 

All CESR applications should be made directly to the GMC (not to the Faculty).

Equivalence describes the process of assessing an applicant's training and experience against the current UK CCT training programme requirements in order to gain a CESR. The process involves submitting a body of evidence of training and/or competence, skills and knowledge to the GMC. Once the GMC has collected what it considers to be a satisfactory range of evidence, it will send the application to the Faculty for consideration. The FICM Equivalence (CESR) Sub Committee will assess the application against the most recent GMC approved Curriculum before providing a recommendation to the GMC, who will then make a final decision.

Equivalence procedures are the responsibility of the General Medical Council. Initial enquiries should be made to the GMC. Applicants should ensure that they have read the GMC-approved Specialty Specific Guidance for ICM CESR applications, as well as the GMC's generic guidance for the types of evidence required to support a CESR application (both available in related downloads)

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions page for further information - click on 'CESR and Equivalence Queries'.



The July 2016 edition of Critical eye put a spotlight on the Equivalence process and Dr Lee Allen, provided an honest account of the time and effort dedicated to his successful CESR application


The GMC have provided a useful presentation about the CESR process for your information


The FICM has provided a useful presentation about the process for the Equivalence Sub- Committee. For more information on the FICM Equivalence Sub-Committee please visit the Committees of the Faculty page.