Diploma in the Medical Care of Catastrophes

From Tuesday 17 March 2020, all examinations and assessments that are due to take place between March and August 2020 will be postponed. Our aim is to ensure that medical staff and health care workers are available to help health services cope with COVID-19. A second aim is to minimise any risk, however small, of transmitting the virus to other groups. Our priority is to look after our members, staff and associates, so they can focus on protecting patients.

We are contacting candidates to advise them of the arrangements that are being made to re-schedule the examinations and assessments. However, no examinations and assessments will take place before September 2020.  We apologise for any inconvenience caused but trust you understand the reasons for this

Established in 1994

The Diploma is designed to demonstrate thorough specialist knowledge for those practitioners who are required to provide a medical and surgical response at the scene of major man-made and natural disasters. It is intended for civilian and military physicians, surgeons, dentists and nurses, who will work as members of medical response teams.

By means of the syllabus, it co-ordinates the preparation of personnel and establishes a level of skill for those working in the catastrophe situation. It is also intended to provide a means by which organisations can identify suitable personnel from those who volunteer to respond to such worldwide crises.

The Diploma is designed to assess the candidate's cross-specialty and organisational knowledge and awareness for the provision of a variety of medical and surgical responses.

The Society also runs a 12-month course to fulfil the requirements for admission to the examination. It is held in London one Saturday per month and begins each January.  More details are available here.

Further Information

In addition to the London date, the Examination is also held in the Netherlands; these examinations are limited to Dutch candidates.

Examination Format

The Diploma examination comprises a written, short answer question paper and an objective structured clinical and skills examination. Candidates sit both elements on the same day or subsequent days.

Full details are provided in the Guide to the Diploma and the Administrative Guidance to Candidates.

Application forms for entry to the February Examination

We were hopeful at the start of the Covid-19 lockdown that we would be able to re-open the Hall and arrange for exams to re-start as soon as September, but that has not been the case.  However, the spread of the virus is now lessening across the UK, and public health restrictions are being reduced daily.  We feel therefore, it would not be taking unnecessary risks to maintain the DMCC schedule for 2021.

Assuming the pandemic and public health restrictions continue to lessen, I anticipate being able to update our website with the new regulations, timetable and application forms etc. for the March 2021 exam next month.  We are currently working to make sure that the new documents are accurate and complete before uploading, so please bear with us until approx mid-October when we should be able to publish.  The deadline for receipt of application forms will be 8th December 2020, so you will still have many weeks within which to submit application forms without disadvantage.

This said, all plans are subject to change (especially if there is any considerable spike in new Covid-19 cases), but you will be kept informed in any case.

First time entry:  CLOSED

Re-entry:  CLOSED

Request for special examination arrangements: Form Q

Examination Review and Appeal Procedure

The Society's Review and Appeal Procedure gives information about feedback, review and appeal. Candidates who seek a review or appeal should note that there is a fee payable, the amount of which is given the the relevant Guide to the Diploma, including the Regulations and Syllabus.

Examination Review and Appeal Procedure

List of Examiners


Hudson Rusby Leigh Prize

Eric H Hudson (1902-1990), N Lloyd Rusby (1905-1988) and A George Leigh (1909-1968) were medical officers during the Second World War, Harley Street colleagues, good friends and Liverymen of the Society. If they were alive today, they would no doubt be proud of the medical and surgical innovations that presently abound in conflict zones. With this in mind, their families, all of whom are represented in today’s Livery, have been pleased to be able to establish a fund for a prize to be awarded to the candidate gaining the best result in one year for the new format Diploma in the Medical Care of Catastrophes. The associated cup, which is retained in the Hall, is in the form of a 17th-century-style, silver gilt, caudle cup and cover.

These cups have a medical connotation, as they were used for caudle, a mixture of warm, spicy gruel of oatmeal, sugar etc. with the addition of ale or wine, which was administered to convalescents and invalids (although, historically, the contents also seem to have been enjoyed by friends and visitors).

Pass Lists

Useful Links
Catastrophe & Conflict Medicine course
RSM Catastrophe & Conflict Forum