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Medical Foundation Programme

Medical Students undertaking their Foundation Programme


From 1st July 2015, the UKFPO (UK Foundation Programme Office) no longer managed the Tier 4 sponsorship process for medical foundation programme doctors. The process was taken over by HEE (Health Education England).

Graduates of UK medicine degree courses, who are sponsored under Tier 4, and who need to undertake a Foundation Programme in order to qualify can apply to be sponsored by the HEE. This enables medical students to move from one placement to the next without needing to apply for new permission each time. However, information on the Foundation Programme can be found on the UKFPO website.

HEE can assign confirmations of acceptance for studies (CASs) if you have completed a recognised UK degree in medicine which is awarded by an institution with a Tier 4 (General) sponsor licence such as the University of Warwick. HEE start assigning CASs at the start of May, before you will have received your results. It is very important that you do not apply before you have evidence of having successfully completed your degree as this is one of the mandatory conditions for transferring to HEE sponsorship. Low risk nationals who are not required to submit documentary evidence of their UK medical degree are advised to be wary of applying too early.

For timescales, key dates and requirements please refer to the UKFPO website. Although they encourage using the CAS as soon as possible after it is issued you need to bear in mind the above advice on when a successful application can be made. In most cases you will be able to start the Foundation Programme whilst your application is in progress, however, there are some exceptions to this which are dependent upon when your current student visa was issued (please refer to the table on the summary page of the UKFPO website). For these few exceptions the Tier 4 visa must have been granted prior to the first day of the course and in order to ensure that this is the case, you may wish to use the premium visa application service rather than the standard route. The UKFPO provides detailed information on making the application on its website (please refer to the FAQs) but they are unable to offer individual immigration advice.

With regard to the work permissions granted the Biometric Residence Permit (BRP card) should state ‘Work 20 hrs max in term-time’. For Tier 4 purposes the Foundation Programme itself is the course of study and must be undertaken on a full-time basis. It is possible to take on appropriate further employment (locum F1/F2 at the same level) of up to 20 hours per week during term-time. Other part-time work unrelated to the Foundation Programme cannot be undertaken. As the sponsoring body the HEE has a duty to monitor engagement with the programme and report certain activities to the Home Office. You therefore need to be aware of your responsibilities with regard to providing requisite information and documents to your employer/HEE.


Please note you are required to report any change in personal circumstances to:

UKFPO Contact details can be found on: