Hi! My name is Daniel Lim Jhao Jian. Here is where I share my experience, knowledge and ideas. You are welcome to leave comments and follow my blog. You are free to copy anything from this blog. Please recommend this blog to your friends.

Tuesday 16 May 2023

My application for the F2 Stand-alone Programme 2023

The Foundation Year 2 (F2) Stand-alone Programme in UK enables doctors who hold or are eligible for Full Registration with the UK General Medical Council (GMC) to directly enter the 2nd year of the UK Foundation Programme (UKFP). As a NUMed graduate who had completed a year of House Officer training at an approved hospital in Malaysia in December 2022, I was eligible to apply for GMC Full Registration through NUMed's ARCP programme.

Unlike the standard 2-year UK Foundation Programme where almost all eligible applicants are offered a place each year, the F2 Stand-alone Programme is much more competitive. In the recent years, there are 1000+ applicants but only about 100 places each year. This means just around 10% of the applicants can get a place, making it about as competitive as getting the Merit award at NUMed or getting a permanent Medical Officer post in Malaysia.

In January 2023, I submitted my application for the F2 Stand-alone Programme 2023. Never in my wildest dreams had I thought that I would get a place for the F2 Stand-alone Programme with such extreme competition. Still, I applied for it because I wanted to see how far I could go. I also knew that there were some useful things I could learn through the application process even if it wasn't successful.

In February 2023, my application was successfully longlisted and I was invited to book a slot for the Situational Judgement Test (SJT). My SJT was held online on 1 March 2023. I successfully got a very high score of 368/431 for the SJT. My previous experience of taking the SJT as part of my applications for the 2-year UKFP in 2021 and 2022 certainly helped in achieving this.

With that, I was successfully shortlisted for an interview. My interview was held online on 18 April 2023. I managed to perform quite well in the interview, getting a score of 71%. This was thanks to my teaching and research experience which helped build a strong curriculum vitae, as well as my good English language and communication and my good response in the ethical scenario.

On 26 April 2023, I was deemed appointable for the F2 Stand-alone Programme. I was ranked 149 out of the 222 appointable applicants and I was invited to rank all available posts based on my preferences. There were 157 posts available for the F2 Stand-alone Programme 2023, which meant that I definitely would be getting a place! I was over the moon.

On 15 May 2023, I was formally offered a place for the F2 Stand-alone Programme 2023 at South Tees NHS Foundation Trust. My successful application for the F2 Stand-alone Programme has shown that with the right efforts and opportunities and a bit of luck, I too can achieve what seems to be beyond my reach. It makes me hopeful of my future, that I will successfully achieve my career goal.

Unfortunately on 7 July 2023, I was informed by NUMed that my ARCP for GMC Full Registration was unsuccessful, due to the fact that I required an extension to training in my 2nd and 3rd placements in House Officer training and some concerns were raised by my clinical supervisors in those placements. Consequently, the ARCP panel required me to complete another placement in House Officer training without an extension before I could apply for GMC Full Registration.

That meant I would only be getting my GMC Full Registration in October 2023 at the earliest, long after the F2 Stand-alone Programme start date on 2 August 2023. It's not possible to join the programme without GMC Full Registration. Therefore, I had no choice but to withdraw from the F2 Stand-alone Programme 2023. I definitely felt very disappointed and devastated. I had successfully overcome an extreme competition to get a place, only for it to be taken away from me in the end just because of an unsuccessful ARCP.

In February 2024, my ARCP was finally successful and I was then granted GMC Full Registration. At that time, I had completed 2 years of House Officer training in Malaysia, making me eligible to apply for specialty training programmes in UK directly. Therefore, I decided not to apply for the F2 Stand-alone Programme 2024.

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