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RCOG Post-nominals: What do MRCOG, FRCOG and DRCOG mean?

Annual membership of the RCOG allows some of our members to use post-nominals MRCOG, FRCOG or DRCOG.

Attainment of these post-nominals indicates that our members have successfully completed the membership or diploma examination process and acknowledges their status as a Member, Fellow or Diplomate of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. It also indicates their commitment to maintaining continuous professional development.

MRCOG and FRCOG

As agreed in our Charter, the designatory letters (post-nominals) MRCOG and FRCOG are acronyms for Member or Fellow of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. This means that use of these post-nominals is restricted to those who are "in good standing" with the College: doctors who have met all of the requirements for full membership of the College, and who maintain that status through payment of an annual subscription fee in accordance with RCOG regulations.

DRCOG

The designatory letters DRCOG are an acronym for Diplomate (diploma holder) of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. The College awards a Diploma (DRCOG) to fully registered medical practitioners who satisfy our examiners. The Diploma is intended to recognise a general practitioner's interest in obstetrics and gynaecology; it is not a specialist qualification.

Associates and Affiliates

The RCOG Associate and Affiliate membership categories are awarded to persons who have completed an application process, which includes an undertaking to uphold and promote the aims of the College to the best of their ability and while in practice to undertake continuing professional development.

Whilst these categories are considered as part of the collective RCOG membership, and may for some be the first step towards attaining full RCOG membership, they are not as a result of completing the membership/diploma examination process. Therefore, the use of any designatory letters (post-nominals) is not permitted for Associates and Affiliates.

Honorary Fellowships

The RCOG awards honorary Fellowships (ad eundem and honoris causa) to exceptional individuals who are not Members or Fellows of the RCOG but who have contributed in some way to the advancement of obstetrics and gynaecology (O&G), women’s healthcare services and/or the work of the RCOG. Honorary Fellows receive lifetime membership of the College and are endowed with the post-nominals FRCOG.

Improper use

The College takes the view that it is misleading for someone who has not successfully completed our membership/diploma examination process to use the post-nominals FRCOG, MRCOG or DRCOG in circumstances where patients and/or colleagues could reasonably believe an individual to be a Fellow, Member or Diplomate of the RCOG.

Inappropriate use of these post-nominals can be seen as a breach of the professional obligation "to be honest and trustworthy", which is defined by the General Medical Council as one of the duties of a doctor.

Examples of inappropriate use include (but are not limited to) using FRCOG, MRCOG or DRCOG on a practice nameplate, websites, leaflets or letterheads, or in information supplied to an employing organisation.

Inappropriate use or misuse of the post-nominal is investigated and followed up by the Membership Team. If you believe you’ve seen improper or misleading use of post-nominals, please email membership@rcog.org.uk.