Arista.MD

Senior Member
7+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Jul 18, 2003
122
0
Visit site
Status
Does anyone have any experience about getting a job in EU once I finish residency? I have all the papers in terms of work rights/citizenship. But I do not know if the MD/PhD from here transfers to EU, and what is the process of getting a job somewhere there. I don't really care where, but I want to be in Europe, because both my husband and are from European countries and we want to be closer to our families.

Thanks,

Arista.
 
1

13538

US residency training isn't recognised in Ireland...and vice versa. I *presume* the UK is similar but not sure about other European countries...
 

f_w

1K Member
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Jan 30, 2005
2,900
3
Status
- what type of job are you looking for: academic research type work or clinical ?

- what country are you looking to move to ?

It is very much dependent on where you want to go.
There are three aspects to this:

#1 Getting your medical degree accepted in order for the right to practice medicine.
#2 Getting your residency training accepted for the respective specialty certification.
#3 Getting your academic title (PhD) accepted in order to qualify for a teaching/research position at a university (goverment run universities can be very buerocratic and particular on that issue)

#1 & #2 at times are intertwined. In the UK for example, as an 'overseas candidate' you would typically have to write the PLAB (a USMLE like series of basic and clinical science exams) before you can be registered with the GMC (=license to practice).
If on the other hand, you can convince the respective specialty college that your US training is equivalent to the UK training in that specialty, you can receive GMC registration without the PLAB. (difficult, most residencies are longer than the US counterparts and the procedure based specialties require far higher numbers).

For #3, it is variable. In some countries, you will need an 'expert opinion' from the doctorate committee of the local medical school. They will look whether you actually did research and defended a thesis, commonly the minimum requirement for a doctorate (a 'bare' US M.D. doesn't qualify as academic title in europe, except in Austria maybe). This is also done to make sure that you didn't buy your PhD from an unacredited online university.

Most european countries (spare the UK) are not prepared for physicians who trained abroad, seeking the right to practice. In these countries, if you have a university interested in hiring you, many of these issues have to be resolved on an individual basis.
As you know, within the EU, medical degrees have become interchangeable. From what I understand, if you have obtained acceptance of your 'overseas' medical degree in one of the EU countries, the others are obliged to accept this now 'intra EU' medical degree (lets say you are greek and receive a job offer from a greek hospital/university. They go to the authorities in Greece and get your degree converted into a greek medical degree. If you now go to the UK, the GMC cannot make you take the PLAB.) Be sure to confirm this by reviewing the respective EU directives and local laws, I might be completely off here.
 

PathOne

Derminatrix
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
May 10, 2004
833
2
Skin City
Status
Attending Physician
Excellent post by f w. Just adding my $0.02:

Don't think you need to worry about your Ph.D. The Ph.D. is in fact today the most international academic degree, and curricula and requirements are generally broadly similar around the world (and mostly based on the US model). I've never head of a legit Ph.D. which wasn't recognized in another country...

But medical licensure is another kettle of fish. NO formal agreements exists between the US and the EU regarding medical pre- or postgraduate training. And you'll find that there's a huge variance in granting licensure, not only among EU countries, but also on a case-by-case basis.

The UK has the PLAB, but otherwise, there isn't a formalized system anywhere near the US ECFMG/USMLE system for determining eligibility for licensure. Some will perhaps give you a license outright. A lot will give you a limited license and require you to work under close supervision for anywhere from 3-12 months, before determining eligibility for full licensure.

The same applies to specialist status. If you are board certified in the US, you might convince licensure boards that you fulfill requirements for specialist status, but they'll probably require you to work for a period of time in a hospital department within your specialty to determine if you can be specialist approved.

It's true that full licensure and/or specialist certification in any EU country, Switzerland, Norway and Iceland will automatically and fully be accepted by any other country (i.e. EU+S, N, I). HOWEVER it's ALSO a requirement that you're a citizen of an EU-country, or that your spouse is. So if you e.g. get full licensure in the UK but am a US national, this automatic recognition does NOT apply...

Generally, I would think that the UK would be the best option for you, because the UK has far and away the most experience with the licensing of non-European physicians.
 

f_w

1K Member
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Jan 30, 2005
2,900
3
Status
> I've never head of a legit Ph.D. which wasn't recognized in
> another country...

Yes, but you have to go through the appropriate channels. I know for a fact that in some EU countries it is unlawful to call yourself 'doctor' unless the local ministry of education has 'homologized' your title. Just using the title to obtain a job without the proper paperwork might get you into hot water.

> HOWEVER it's ALSO a requirement that you're a citizen of an EU-
> country, or that your spouse is.

The key phrase here is: 'EU national or non-EU national with EU rights'.

> Generally, I would think that the UK would be the best option for
> you, because the UK has far and away the most experience

Yes and no. As a national of a country, you can sometimes use local channels to facilitate things. Nepotism is an essential ingredient of the medical system in many european countries. The word of a known University department chairman can move mountains. If the local medical board wouldn't bother to answer your inquiries before, after some big-whig gets on the case they suddenly become very accomodating.

In the UK on the other hand, you have to contend with their somewhat parochial (and often outright arrogant) system. If you are in a specialty the NHS is short handed in, things seem to work smoothly. If you are in a specialty that a close knit old-boys network is making good ###'s, suddenly the requirements start to grow every time you talk to them.
 

Miklos

Guest
15+ Year Member
Nov 26, 2003
729
0
Status
Resident [Any Field]
f_w said:
Yes and no. As a national of a country, you can sometimes use local channels to facilitate things. Nepotism is an essential ingredient of the medical system in many european countries. The word of a known University department chairman can move mountains. If the local medical board wouldn't bother to answer your inquiries before, after some big-whig gets on the case they suddenly become very accomodating.
So true. :laugh:
 

john182

Member
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Sep 16, 2004
117
1
Status
Arista.MD said:
Does anyone have any experience about getting a job in EU once I finish residency? I have all the papers in terms of work rights/citizenship. But I do not know if the MD/PhD from here transfers to EU, and what is the process of getting a job somewhere there. I don't really care where, but I want to be in Europe, because both my husband and are from European countries and we want to be closer to our families.

Thanks,

Arista.
Your medical degree (MD) will be valid. However, if you got that degree from a non-EU country and are a non-EU citizen you will have toy sit PLAB in UK. Even if you have a degree from EU (e.g., Ireland) and are a non-EU citizen you still will have to sit the PLAB.

First thing is to check your registration status with the intended country. The UK GMC have a good website for this and will guide you to the correct type of registration.

Regarding your training being recognised, I'm sure it will, but it's equivalent to a Royal College membership being "recognised" in US: for example, the minimum requirements for say a consultant post in Ireland is to be on the registered board of specialists (e.g., radiology, whatever, vascular surgery) OR 7 years postgrad training with say at least 3 years in your chosen speciality.

This means that your residency training will mean basic training and you would most likely be best applying for a UK SpR in some subspeciality. You won't meet the training requirements for a consultant post as you don't have 3 years in say, gastro only (just general internal med, for example).
 

PathOne

Derminatrix
10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
May 10, 2004
833
2
Skin City
Status
Attending Physician
Well, although the (US & EU) system can look rigid on paper, it can in fact be bended through individual merit. On paper, you cannot generally sit for US specialty boards without doing the full ACGME residency thing (except in int med), but in reality, it's not unheard-of for European specialists to be attendings - if their background is strong enough. Same applies to Europe, but somewhat more arbitrarily. Some get easy specialist approval. Others have to jump through hoops...

Regarding Ph.D.: I didn't write that it was hassle-free. Just that I have never EVER heard about a legit US degree not being recognized in Europe.

And yes, nepotism in general works wonders. On both sides of the Atlantic...