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GMC registration - STEP 2 - EPIC verification of PMQ by the ECFMG

Doctors with non-UK medical qualifications will need to have certain qualifications independently verified before the GMC can grant registration.

Verification is carried out by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) through their online system, known as the Electronic Portfolio of International Credentials (EPIC) service. ECFMG will verify the qualification is genuine by checking this directly with your awarding institution.

Before you start your EPIC verification, you may want to familiarise yourself with the main steps of the EPIC verification process. The process itself is not complicated, you just need to know what is expected of you and the documents you need to verify. To help you with this, we have prepared a detailed step-by-step guide using the most trusted resources: GMC instructions and the ECFMG guide.

Checking if the GMC accepts your Primary Medical Qualification (PMQ)

This is a very important step before starting the EPIC verification process. In our previous post, we explained how to check whether your PMQ meets the GMC criteria of an acceptable PMQ. If your PMQ is not acceptable, the GMC will not grant you registration even if your PMQ is verified by the ECFMG.

Opening your EPIC account

After ensuring that your PMQ is acceptable, you may now open your EPIC account. It usually takes approximately 15 minutes to complete. You will be required to submit basic personal information, details about your medical education, details about your medical licence, if applicable, and documents to confirm your identity. Do not worry if you do not know what information to provide - once you set up an account, a very comprehensive EPIC guide will navigate you through the whole process. The fee for opening an EPIC account is $125.

Once you have requested to open an EPIC account, EPIC will send you a confirmation email. You will then need to wait for up to 3 business days for ECFMG to establish your account.

Completing your EPIC Identification Form (EIF)

Once your EPIC account is successfully established, you will need to go to your EPIC Identification Form (EIF) through the “My Identity Documents” tab of your EPIC Account. Then you need to download the form, fill in your basic personal details and upload it back to your EPIC account. Now you need to request a meeting with NotaryCam, ECFMG’s preferred online notary service, that will certify your EPIC Identification Form (EIF).

Once your EPIC account is successfully established, you will be given a unique EPIC Identification Number. You will need this number when applying for GMC registration.

After submitting your EPIC Identification Form (EIF) and meeting request, a NotaryCam notary will reach out to schedule a video meeting with you to prove your identity and verify your EPIC Identification Form (EIF). The meeting usually takes a few minutes. Once your notary video session has been completed, NotaryCam will send your EIF electronically to ECFMG for processing. ECFMG typically processes EIFs within 3 business days of their receipt at ECFMG.

You will be informed when ECFMG has accepted the EPIC Identification Form (EIF) that you submitted.

Uploading your credentials

After your EPIC Identification Form (EIF) has been accepted, you may then begin to upload your credentials to EPIC for primary-source verification through the “My Credentials” tab of your EPIC Account. You will need to upload good-quality copies of your credentials. EPIC can accept credentials in PDF, JPG, and TIF formats, with a maximum file size of 10MB. All pages of the credential must be combined into one file for upload.

The documents you need to submit for verification will depend on the chosen route for GMC registration:

  • If you are applying through the PLAB route, you will need to upload your Primary Medical Qualification (PMQ). This is your final medical diploma, not your mark sheet.

  • If you are applying through an acceptable postgraduate qualification (PGQ) route, you will need to upload your PMQ + PGQ.

  • If you are applying with a Relevant European Qualification (REQ), you will need to upload your REQ.

  • If you are applying for Specialist/GP registration with a Relevant European Specialist or GP qualification, you will need to upload your PMQ + Accompanying certificate + Specialist or GP qualification.

Please note that any document you upload to EPIC that is not in English must be accompanied by an English translation that meets ECFMG’s translation requirements. You are not permitted to translate your own documents. ECFMG recommends using Straker Translations, but you can use any other agency as long as ECFMG’s translation requirements are met. More information on ECFMG’s translation requirements can be found here. It is worth keeping in mind that English translations that do not meet the requirements will not be accepted and, therefore, will not be sent for verification. Examples of unacceptable translations include, but are not limited to:

  • translations prepared by a notary who is not a government or medical school official or representative of a professional translation service

  • a translation that was not signed by the translator or official or representative of the translation service

  • a translation that is not a word-for-word translation of the original language document

The fee is $90 per document being verified.

Remember to select the GMC when you upload your credentials to EPIC and your EPIC report will be sent directly to the GMC.

Verifying your credentials by your awarding institution

When your uploaded credentials are accepted by ECFMG, you will receive an email stating that your credentials have been accepted and sent for verification to your awarding institution. You may want to pay for a trackable package when ECFMG sends your credentials for verification so that you can notify your institution on time.

Start the EPIC verification process as early as possible. Ideally, after you have passed the PLAB 1 exam. The whole process usually takes 30 – 60 days (time depends on how fast your institution can verify your credentials). After you have applied for GMC registration, the GMC can only keep applications open for 90 days, so plan your time wisely.

Your institution may have a fee associated with verifying credentials, which should be paid directly to your institution. When you log in to your EPIC account, you will be able to see whether your institution has notified ECFMG that there is a fee associated with verifying credentials. You will then need to contact the institution for information on how to pay this fee. Please keep in mind that failure to pay the fee may delay the verification process.

EPIC report

After your credentials are verified by your institution, they should be sent back directly to ECFMG in form of an EPIC report (your institution should be a sender, not you). EPIC will notify you by e-mail when your credentials have been verified. You will receive an email* like this:

*this image was kindly provided by one of our IMGs who has recently had their credentials verified by EPIC

EPIC Reports are considered valid only if obtained directly by the GMC through the EPIC Report Portal. You may send an EPIC Report to yourself, but you will still need to send it to the GMC through EPIC Report Portal. To make it easier, just select the GMC when you upload your qualification to EPIC and your EPIC report will be sent directly to the GMC.

Although verification is valid for your lifetime, the final EPIC report stays at GMC for one year following the date the report was sent.

Having questions?

1. You can always ask our friendly team members, mentors and senior IMGs for advice here. Our guidance is free.

2. We encourage you to watch the Q&A session from a 1-hour interactive and engaging webinar with the GMC on the GMC registration process.

3. Read Q&A from ECFMG here.

In our next posts, we will provide full guidance on evidence of your knowledge of English that you must submit in order to get GMC registration.


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