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‘Did I pass the licensing exam?’ aspects influencing migrant physicians’ results: a mixed methods study
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  • Published on:
    How will the move from PLAB to UKMLA influence physician migration to the UK?
    • Oscar R Barnes, Medical Student University of Oxford
    • Other Contributors:
      • Oscar T Deal, Medical Student

    Dear Authors,
    We read with great interest your recent article which explores the many barriers involved in passing licensing examinations to practise in another country.
    In the UK, the NHS workforce relies on, and is massively enriched by, migration. As a student here, I am interested to hear your thoughts about how the introduction of a new licensing requirement, the UKMLA, will influence physician migration and integration into the UK workforce.
    From early 2024, international medical graduates who would have sat the PLAB test will start to sit the MLA instead, as will all medical students in the UK. The GMC states that 'the MLA will give patients and employers greater confidence in doctors new to working in the UK, wherever they were educated or trained' [1].
    This approach is new in that it aims to provide a common approach, no matter where one has obtained their medical degree. There are arguably two possible directions in which this will go. The first possibility is that the UKMLA will indeed streamline entry in to practice in the UK, by making the requirements more consistent. Asking international graduates to sit broadly the same examination as doctors who train in the UK may also mean that there are more resources available to prepare for the examination. In the USA for example, the requirements for board licensing are largely the same for doctors who obtained their degree in America and for internati...

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    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.