...................with special reference to one in particular.
It occurred to me, with reference to this thread: http://thisisms.com/modules.php?name=Forums&file=viewtopic&t=1409&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=15
(this brings you to page 2) that most people using this forum are going to be more familiar with the American certification of medical doctors and won't necessarily know much about the English one. This could inadvertently lead to some misunderstandings.
The English equivalent of an MD is MB ChB (bachelor of medicine, bachelor of chirurgery [surgery]). This is the basic grade of a doctor in medicine, where you are allowed to prescribe for patients. You are registered by the General Medical Council as being fit to practice and prescribe. They keep list of doctors which you may search here: http://www.gmc-uk.org/register/search/index.asp
. It is kept bang up to date.
You then goes on to study a speciality, after which one is examined and awarded a certificate of one of the Royal Colleges, in my husband David Wheldon's case Pathology, so he became an MRCPath, (Member). Several years later he was invited to become an FRCPath (Fellow). It all sounds quite archaic typing it all! Pathology includes basic pathology, neuropathology, which David actually studied for a while at Oxford before specialising in microbiology, virology, microbiology, haematology, histopathology and so on. In a hospital environment, you can and do see patients. This happens less in a research facility.
Once you gain a speciality, you are entitled to start applying for a hospital consultant's post. Most people, if successful, will be appointed in their mid thirties. David was appointed at 29. Whilst doing his basic training he did work with a few patients with end-stage multiple sclerosis, then whilst studying neuropathology he saw many lesions inside the MS brain. Years later, he met me, I developed an aggressive form of SPMS and he discovered the work going on at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.