Pathway to Ireland

  • 1- What is IMC?

    It is the Irish Medical Council. It is the regulatory body, responsible for registration of all medical doctors in Ireland. Their website is

  • 2- What is IMC registration?

    Being registered with the IMC gives you a license to practice medicine in the Republic of Ireland. Without it you cannot practice medicine in Ireland.

  • 3- If I have IMC registration, does this automatically mean that I can get a job?

    No. IMC registration is only a license to practice. It is not a guarantee for a job. You still need to search for available posts, apply for them, attend an interview and hopefully get accepted.

  • 4- How can I register with the IMC?

    There are two different pathways, dependent on your qualifications

    • a- If you do not have a recognized higher qualification, you need to pass the IELTS exam and you need to apply to sit the PRES exam.
    • b- If you have a recognized higher qualification, you can apply for an exemption from the PRES exam, and you do not need the IELTS exam for registrations purposes. Please note, that currently some employers ask for IELTS prior to you taking up a post.
  • 5- What is PRES?

    It is the Pre-Registration Examination System. It is an equivalency process and exam required by the IMC, in order to assess your qualifications & ensure that you are safe to practice medicine in Ireland. This is similar to the PLAB in the UK, USMLE in the USA and AMC in Australia. Please note that you need to have acquired the appropriate score in the IELTS exam, prior to applying for the PRES.

  • 6- What is IELTS?

    International English Language Testing System. IELTS is required by the medical registration bodies in Ireland and other countries, such as UK, Canada and Australia.

    It measures the language proficiency of people who want to study or work where English is used as a language of communication.

    The exam has 4 components; Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking.

  • 7- What is the pass mark for the IELTS?

    There is no pass or fail in the IELTS. It uses a nine-band scale to clearly identify levels of proficiency, from non-user (band score 1) through to expert (band score 9). You get a score for each component, as well as an overall band score.

  • 8- What is the IELTS score required by the IMC?

    You need to pass the Academic IELTS, with a score of 7 in each component and 7.5 total band score.

  • 9- How can I prepare for the IELTS exam?

    Further details can be found at

  • 10- What higher qualifications can exempt me from the PRES?

    The list of higher qualifications recognized for the purpose of exemption from the PRES can be found in the following link:

    Please be aware that a masters degree, MD, Egyptian board, and Arab Board are not qualifications that would be recognized for exemption from the PRES.

  • 11- What is the availability of jobs in Ireland like?

    Like anywhere else in the world, it’s subject to supply and demand. As a general rule certain specialties have better availability, such as Emergency medicine and Psychiatry. Of course, the stronger your CV, the easier it is to get a post.

  • 12- Why Ireland?

    It gives you the opportunity of western experience, a higher qualification and eventually citizenship.

  • 13- Is Ireland better than the USA, Uk, Canada or Australia?

    There is no such thing as better. Each country has its pros and cons. You need to read as much as possible about all of these countries, before making an informed decision as to which suits your individual circumstances better.

  • 14- What are the pros of working and living in Ireland?
    • a- Neutral country.
    • b- Racism and discrimination levels are one of the lowest in the western world.
    • c- The community is relatively conservative, compared to other western societies.
    • d- High quality primary education for the children.
    • e- You may be able to avoid the IELTS if you have a higher qualification.
    • f- Could be used as a stepping stone towards the UK or Australia.
  • 15- What are the cons of working and living in Ireland?
    • a- It is still a European country. The western culture (even though it is slightly more conservative) may still not suit some people.
    • b- Income is sufficient to live comfortably, however, there is no margin for saving. If you are mainly looking to save money, then the gulf area would be more suited to your needs.
    • c- Job opportunities are less than other countries. Ireland is a small country with a population of around 4.5 million. So definitely their requirements would not be the same as bigger countries like the UK or the USA.
    • d- Training posts and consultant jobs are very limited.
  • 16- What do you mean by stepping stone to the UK or Australia?
    • a- If you are registered with the IMC and work in Ireland for 2 years, then you can register with the AMC without the need for an exam.
    • b- If you are registered with the IMC and work in Ireland for 2 years, then you can register with the GMC without the need for IELTS. That is only in the situation if you had registered with a higher qualification, and had not sat the IELTS before.
  • 17- What is the medical hierarchy in Ireland?

    People who graduate from medical school, work as an intern for one year. Then they undergo 2 to 3 years of SHO, followed by a minimum of 5 years as a registrar or SPR, and then a consultant.

  • 18- What is an SHO?

    SHO is a senior house officer. This is where they do their basic specialist training (BST). It is the equivalent of (nayeb) in Egypt. Within this period, the SHO is expected to finish the basic specialty exam (e.g. MRCS in Surgery or part one of MRCP in Medicine)

  • 19- What is a registrar?

    A registrar is the equivalent of (akhesaey). The registrar is more experienced than an SHO. In order to work as a registrar you need to have a basic higher qualification (e.g. MRCS in Surgery or part one of MRCP in Medicine). Without that exam, you can only work as an SHO.

  • 20- What is an SPR?

    SPR is a specialist registrar. They are basically a registrar, but on a proper training scheme. There is a centralized interview process for people applying for the higher specialty training to become SPRs. This interview process is done by the specific Royal College (per specialty), whole the whole country.

    At the moment, there are certain restrictions for Egyptians to apply for specialty training, due to an issue with the internship. Until this matter is solved, you can only apply for registrar posts, but not for SPR training.