PESCI Update 2020

What is a PESCI?

PESCI stands for Pre-Employment Structured Clinical Interview. AHPRA defines a PESCI as an objective assessment of your knowledge, skills, clinical experience and attributes to determine whether you are suitable to practise in a specific position. The PESCI consists of a clinical interview using scenarios. 

These scenarios are chosen based on the demographics of the practice where you will be working.

When is a PESCI Needed?

Doctors intending to apply for Limited Registration or Provisional Registration, with a General Practice job offer need to sit for a PESCI. This requirement can also apply to General Practitioners who are already registered with AHPRA with Limited Registration or Provisional Registration, who wish to work in another practice.


RACGP offers PESCI’s for practices in ACT, NSW, SA, VIC and TAS.  

Interviews are generally available within 3 – 9 weeks depending on the number of interview requests.  

As part of your application for a PESCI, you will need to provide the following documents: 

  • Application form 
  • Position Description (RACGP format) 
  • AHPRA formatted Curriculum Vitae
  • AHPRA Supervised Practice Plan
  • A copy of the passport details page

The interview panel comprises three general practitioners (two panelists and a chairperson). The panel may also include a community member or a health professional.

A PESCI consists of questions and cases asked by the panel to enable the candidate to demonstrate their knowledge and skills as outlined in their CV and in consideration of the proposed position description. The interviewers will provide guidance on what interaction is expected at each stage of the process. The time allocated for the interview is approximately 60 – 90 minutes.

The interview is designed to assess the candidate’s capacity in each of the following areas, as appropriate:

  • medical interviewing skills;
  • physical examination skills;
  • clinical judgement;
  • treatment/advice;
  • communication skills;
  • professionalism;
  • procedural skills;
  • relevant social and cultural needs.


ACRRM offers PESCI’s for all practice locations.  

Interviews are held in QLD, NSW, VIC, SA and WA.  

They are assigned based on the location of the practice. However, you can request a PESCI in a different location if needed! 

Additionally, interviews can be conducted via video conference, but this is generally not recommended by ACRRM. You will also be responsible for organising the interview venue and an invigilator and all costs associated. 

How long you will have to book in advance for a PESCI will depend on the state in which you are requesting a PESCI. 

As part of your application for a PESCI, you will need to provide the following: 

  • Copy of your Passport 
  • ACRRM Position Description 
  • Training Plan – if applying for Limited Registration – Postgraduate Training and Supervised Practice

The PESCI panel will comprise of three people:  either three College Fellows or two College Fellows and one who may be a health professional, a lay person or a medical practitioner. Each interview will take approximately 90 minutes and will include four or five clinical scenarios which will be conducted as either a role play or case based discussion.

The interview will assess the applicant’s competency in each of the following areas, as appropriate to the proposed position:

  • Medical interviewing skills
  • Physical examination skills
  • Clinical judgment
  • Treatment/advice
  • Communication skills
  • Professionalism
  • Procedural skills
  • Other domains relevant to the position, e.g. familiarity with relevant social and cultural issues and Australian language idioms.

PESCI Exemption

To apply for a PESCI exemption through AHPRA, you will need to submit a request for an exemption with your original application. You will need to prepare a letter outlining why you are eligible for an exemption based on the previous practice and new practice. A letter comparing the practices will need to be provided by the new Practice Manager as well. 

AHPRA will consider your request for a PESCI exemption at the Medical Board with your full application and will let you know if these results will be transferable or if you need to sit for another PESCI. 

I keep failing my PESCI, what can I do?

It’s important to implement the recommendations provided to you by the panellists. Whether it is educational seminars, more observerships or CPD activities, demonstrating that you have tried to improve upon the skills the panellists have identified that you lack in will help you to pass next time.

If you fail more than a few times, then there is a higher risk your application won’t be approved even if you passed the last PESCI. You will need to clearly outline how you have followed the recommendations of the PESCI panel. 

How long is a PESCI valid for?

There is no official expiry for PESCI results, however, we wouldn’t suggest using any results that are older than 2 years. 

What does a PESCI cost?

RACGP PESCIs cost $2,145, a review costs $1072.5 and a PESCI appeal costs $1000. 

ACRRM PESCIs cost $2,495


Our team offer General Practitioners assistance with finding jobs and a career pathway, and Medical Facilities to find a new Medical Practitioner. We also help with the full application process with AHPRA, RACGP, ACRRM, Department of Health, Medicare including 19AA & 19AB. If we can help, please contact us at [email protected]

People Medical Consulting are a team of professionals with a passion for guiding those specialising in the Medical industry to find their career pathway and settle into Australia. Working with both Australian trained and Overseas trained professionals, we have extensive experience in Recruitment of General Practitioners and Document Assistance for those requiring support with RACGP, AHPRA, 19AA and 19AB Medicare Exemptions.

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