Following today's announcement by Professor Dame Jane Dacre that the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) now has over 35,000 active members, the RCP said it was making changes to its membership access requirements in order to increase inclusivity and encourage members of the wider physician family to join and enjoy the benefits of membership.
In recognition of the strain on trainees, the RCP said it will reduce the price of membership for doctors in training. Doctors in core medical training will pay £70 (reduced from £120). Higher specialty trainees will pay £130 (reduced from £161).
To recognise their contribution to great patient care, and to increase membership within the wider RCP constituency, the RCP has also introduced new eligibility requirements. NHS consultants working in a substantive post but who do not hold the MRCP (UK) diploma will be eligible for collegiate membership for the first time, and advanced clinical practitioners either working or training in acute medicine or the medical specialties in the UK will be eligible for associate membership.
RCP president Professor Dame Jane Dacre said:
I’m delighted that we have now reached 35,000 members in our 500th year. Thomas Linacre our founder would have been very proud about our growth and that we have lasted 500 years by being true to our original purposes - protecting the public from unqualified practitioners, setting standards of education and training and maintaining the fellowship of physicians.
RCP registrar and president-elect Dr Andrew Goddard said:
I’m really pleased with these changes to RCP membership which we have been working toward over the past year. We can now offer RCP membership at a much lower cost to trainees, welcome consultant NHS staff no matter where they have trained and also welcome advanced clinical practitioners for the first time. All three groups are crucial to making our NHS the best in the world and are an integral part of the RCP family.
These changes will take effect from 1 August 2018. Updates to subscription prices for current members will take place through the usual renewal process. Advanced clinical practitioners can register their interest in membership prior to 1 August 2018 by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.