Primary and Final FRCA examinations regulations

Published: 26/07/2019

Section 1: Training Definitions


(a)  For the purpose of these Regulations a trainee is someone who has received ‘approved training’ in the UK and/or the Republic of Ireland.

(b)  For the purpose of these Regulations ‘approved training’ means training:

  1. which is part of a UK GMC approved programme of training in Anaesthetics, Acute Care Common Stem (ACCS) or Intensive Care Medicine (ICM) (dual) programme which, if satisfactorily completed, may contribute to the award of a Certificate of Completion of Training in Anaesthetics/Certificate of Eligibility of Specialist Registration (Combined Programme) (CESR) (CP); or
  2. which has been approved by the College of Anaesthetists, Ireland;
  3. and which is appropriate to the part of the examination for which the candidate is applying.
  4. Former UK trainees are doctors who have previously attended training as described above. Time restriction conditions may apply.

(c)  (i)      Non-UK anaesthetic trainees are anaesthetic doctors who have not carried out approved training as described in paragraph 1(b). Non-UK anaesthetic trainee applicants will be required to meet comparable eligibility criteria to that met by a UK trainee.

      (ii)     Non-UK anaesthetic trainee applicants applying for Final examinations must have been employed as an anaesthetist in a UK NHS post for at least 12 continuous months immediately prior to the date of the exam applied for. (This also applies to Former Irish Trainees who have been out of an Irish training programme for more than five years).

(d)  ICM (single) programme trainees are only eligible to apply for Primary FRCA exams.

(e)  Foundation trainees are trainees currently attending a UK Medical Foundation Programme (F1 and F2). Foundation trainees are eligible to apply for the Primary FRCA MCQ examination in order to provide further opportunity to build on experience gained in an anaesthetic placement.

(f)  RCoA MTI are doctors currently sponsored under the RCoA Medical Training Initiative (MTI), applicants are only normally recognised for examination purposes whilst under sponsorship. However, if at the end of their sponsorship an MTI applicant has passed one or more exam components of an exam part (Primary or Final) but have further components to complete to pass the relevant exam part overall. Then they will be allowed further attempts at the outstanding component for a maximum period of one year from the end of sponsorship, providing they remain eligible in all other respects.

(g)  Exemption qualifications (paragraph 19), are qualifications that are considered acceptable by College Council in place of a pass in the Primary FRCA (conditions apply), as part eligibility towards the FRCA Final examinations only. Information regarding examinations which can be used for recruitment to or passage through anaesthetic training can be found on the training section of the College website.