HC Deb 28 February 1881 vol 258 cc1843-4

asked the Vice President of the Council, If he is aware that the highest qualification of the Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh, viz. the Fellowship, is to be had without examination, and even in ab- sentiâ, by persons holding lower qualifications, on payment, and by a process of vote by ballot; if he is aware that the highest qualification of the other two Scottish Medical Corporations, viz. the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh, and the Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons, Glasgow, is given on similar terms; and, if he can inform the House whether such a system has ever been the subject of representation or remonstrance by the General Medical Council?


Sir, I have reason to believe that, as regards the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, the Fellowship can be obtained by persons who are already members of the Colleges of Surgeons of England, Scotland, or Ireland, on the terms stated; but I understand the Fellowship is not a licence or qualification to practice, but is a distinction conferred by a three-fourths vote of the College. As regards the Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow and the College of Physicians of Edinburgh, I have, as yet, been unable to obtain certain information. As regards the Medical Council, I understand that the question of the so-called "higher titles" was discussed by the Council in the year 1859, and it was then decided— That the General Medical Council were of opinion that for the future no licence or degree should he given by any of the bodies in Schedule A of the Medical Act without examination. And in the year 1870 the subject was again brought forward with reference to Clause XVI of Lord Ripon's Medical Act Amendment Bill; but in consequence of the withdrawal of that Bill, and pending further legislation, the subject has not at present been renewed. The question of those higher titles will form part of the inquiry into the working of the Medical Acts which the Government propose to institute.