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Covid-19: Impact on RCPI exams

Trainee using computer.

Examinations Calendar for 2021 - 2022 now available

The situation with regards to COVID -19 continues to evolve. We will make decisions in line with the latest advice from the Government and Department of Health in Ireland.

2021-2022 Examinations Calendar

Published 7 July 2021. Updated 12 May 2022

View exam dates and opening/closing dates for 2022 The fee for MRCPI examination has increased in line with the rising costs associated with delivering the exams, effective for all exams taken after 1 August 2022. Modest fee increases are spread across the three exam components.

Remote invigilation

All our written examinations will be delivered by remote invigilation.

You sit the same examination (structure, format and length) online, but in a quiet, secure place of your choosing. Instead of travelling to an examination centre and sitting the computer-based examination with other candidates, you do the same test as originally planned, but at your own computer – e.g. at home or at work. Candidates are supervised remotely by invigilators throughout the examination.

You can read more about remote invigilation here.

Clinical Examinations and OSCEs

Updated 12 April 2022

We endeavour to conduct all OSCE/Clinical examinations as planned, however, due to the ever-changing circumstances of COVID-19, these examinations may be postponed and rescheduled at short notice.

Update regarding Covid vaccinations in our Clinical and OSCE exams from September 2021 until further notice:

  • Full COVID vaccination for candidates, examiners and others involved in the clinical examinations of the RCPI is strongly advised.
  • In the absence of that, the RCPI Examinations Team will require email confirmation of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to the examination or proof of a COVID positive test in the previous nine months

 

Clinical Examinations – Irish centres

MRCPI Part II General Medicine Clinical Examination

The MRCPI Part II General Medicine Clinical examination will be held as scheduled, in January/February, May/June and September/October. Candidates from the Gulf region and Malaysia are advised to apply for a Clinical exam in one of our international centres.This exam will be open to all applicants, though RCPI trainees and candidates living and working in Ireland will continue to be prioritised.

MRCPI Paediatrics Part II Clinical Examination
The next MRCPI Paediatrics Part II Clinical examination in Ireland will take place on 20 May 2022 and in November 2022. November date is still to be confirmed. Please note, places in this exam are limited. This exam will be open to all applicants, though RCPI trainees and candidates living and working in Ireland will continue to be prioritised.

MRCPI Obstetrics and Gynaecology Part II OSCE/Clinical Examination
The next diet of the Clinical Examination for MRCPI in Obstetrics and Gynaecology in Ireland will take place on 28 May 2022 in Ireland only and in November 2022 in Ireland and UAE. November date is still to be confirmed. Please note, places in this exam are limited, priority rules apply as normal.  This exam is open to all applicants, subject to any changing travel restrictions.

 

Clinical Examinations – International centres

Overseas clinical exams resumed in late 2021. A Review Committee has worked closely with Examination Boards and exam convenors, both in Ireland and overseas, to ensure that the exam format keeps everyone safe while maintaining the high standards for which RCPI is known. The exams are run overseas in the same formats that have been used successfully since November 2020 in Ireland.

MRCPI Part II General Medicine Clinical Examination

For details of upcoming clinical exams in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Malaysia and Oman please see: https://www.rcpi.ie/examinations/mrcpi-in-general-medicine/general-medicine-part-ii-clinical/

Places will be limited due to COVID-19 restrictions, because of this we will have to prioritise candidates based on when they passed the Part II Written exam.

The College continues to be committed to running International Clinical examinations and we are continuously working to finalise examinations dates for 2022. We will publish details on future exams as soon as they have been confirmed.

For details of the changes to the exam format, please see: https://rcpi-live-cdn.s3.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/MRCPI-Part-II-GM-Clinical-Examination-Candidate-Information-COVID-Updated-June-2021.pdf

MRCPI Obstetrics and Gynaecology Part II OSCE/Clinical Examination

This international exam will take place in UAE on the same date as Ireland in November 2022. This date is still to be confirmed and the website will be updated when it is. Please note, places in this exam are limited, priority rules apply as normal.

What have we done so far?

We worked closely with the Clinical Examination Boards and others, following public health advice, to recommence these examinations. We successfully ran diets in Ireland for Paediatrics in November 2020, Obstetrics and Gynaecology in December 2020 and General Medicine over November and December 2020. We restarted these clinical examinations with the first groups of doctors on the final year of their RCPI training programmes. These examinations are essential for the completion of their training. These rounds of examinations were held in person with candidates and examiners present. The format of the examination was adjusted somewhat but, in essence, remained the same as the clinicals held in the recent past – the outcomes, standards and the core principles of the examination remain the same. The main modification across all clinical examinations is in relation to strict adherence to infection control policies at the examination centre.   We have continued with more offerings of diets in Ireland into 2021 for both RCPI trainees and other candidates and we will be restarting our clinical examinations internationally in the last few months of 2021.

Thank you for your continued patience and understanding as we navigate through this challenging situation with the pandemic.

Do you need support?

We understand the anxiety caused by this disruption and uncertainty. If you are feeling stressed you will find advice and information on our website here.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Refunds are permitted prior to the closing date for applications. After that date, you will be allowed a transfer to a future exam if you are unable to sit the exam for Covid-related reasons. Please email exams@rcpi.ie

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In light of the evolving and fast-changing situation globally regarding COVID 19, unfortunately RCPI cannot be responsible for any expenses (such as travel, accommodation etc) incurred by a candidate in the event of a cancellation or rescheduling of an examination.

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We are here to support you. Please email us at exams@rcpi.ie

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This relates to our Clinical and OSCE exams only. You do not need to provide the below for our written exams that are held via remote invigilation.

From September 2021 until further notice:

  • Full COVID vaccination for candidates, examiners and others involved in the clinical examinations of the RCPI is strongly advised.
  • In the absence of that, the RCPI Examinations Team will require email confirmation of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to the examination or proof of a COVID positive test in the previous nine months

Impact on MRCPI Conferrings

We resumed in-person conferring ceremonies in April 2022. See our Conferring page for more information and latest updates on our next conferring ceremony. RCPI » MRCPI Conferring Ceremonies

FAQs about conferrings

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We advise you to be conferred in absentia in 2020/2021. You will find information about our next conferring ceremony here: https://www.rcpi.ie/examinations/conferring-ceremonies/

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Doctors who are conferred in absentia are given a confirmation (holding) letter to say they have been conferred. We will provide the Medical Council with the names of those who have been conferred in absentia. Once the COVID-19 crisis has passed, we will post your MRCPI diploma to you, at an address nominated by you, and you can provide to the Medical Council.

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Doctors who are conferred in absentia will be given a confirmation (holding) letter to say they have been conferred. Once the COVID-19 crisis has passed, we will post your MRCPI diploma to you, at an address nominated by you. 

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Yes. All doctors who are conferred in absentia, and who are in possession of the confirmation (holding) letter, will be full members of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, and have all the rights associated with membership.

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Doctors who are conferred in absentia are given a confirmation (holding) letter to say they have been conferred. We will provide the Medical Council with the names of those who have been conferred in absentia. Once the COVID-19 crisis has passed, we will post your MRCPI diploma to you, at an address nominated by you, and you can provide to the Medical Council.

Where to find COVID-19 information for Ireland

For updates on the situation in Ireland, we recommend checking the following websites

 

Contact us

The best way to reach us during the COVID-19 pandemic is by email, as staff are working from home.

If you need to speak to someone dial +353 1 8639700 and press 1 for Exams. Phone lines are manned 09:00 - 17:00 GMT, Monday to Friday.

RCPI Helpdesk

Tel: +353 1 8639721

Contact our Helpdesk for assistance with using our online products and services. Open Monday to Friday, 9:00am - 5:00pm.