Royal College of Physicians

History and Membership

  • Founded by King Henry VIII in 1518
  • Oldest medical college in England
  • Home located in Regents Park
  • Opened new premises in Liverpool at The Spine in 2016
  • The Spine opened in May 2021
  • MRCP(UK) postnominal used by doctors who passed examinations for the Diploma of Membership
  • Collegiate Members and Affiliate Members may be considered for advancement to fellowship
  • Associate, medical student, and foundation doctor levels of membership
  • Fellows (FRCP) elected mostly from general membership, but also from specialized faculties
  • Munks Roll contains biographical entries of the fellows

Library and Rare Book Collections

  • Supports learning and information needs of members, students, and staff
  • Enquiry service provides information on the RCP's role and history
  • Holds books on history of medicine, genealogy, health and social policy, and medical education
  • Rare book collections available to the general public by appointment
  • Diverse rare books and special collections reflecting the educational base for physicians
  • Library collection since 1518, with most original books destroyed in the Great Fire of London
  • Rare books and special collections diverse in coverage
  • Highlights include books printed before 1502, books belonging to John Dee, Dorchester collection, and Evan Bedford collection
  • Over 4,500 tracts from the 17th to the 19th century covering medical and scientific subjects
  • Continuum of change and development in RCP's specialties displayed in books and journals

Legislation and Subtopic 1: Museum Collections

  • Physicians Act 1523 granted privileges and authority to physicians in London
  • College of Physicians Act 1553 incorporated the college
  • Royal College of Physicians of London Act 1960 conferred further powers and confirmed the name of the college
  • The college's corporate name authorized by the Royal College of Physicians of London Act 1960
  • Function of the 1960 Act was to move the college's premises to Regents Park
  • Books relating to the history of the RCP's specialties
  • Biographies of fellows and prominent figures in medicine
  • Books relating to the formation of the National Health Service (NHS) and its continuing history
  • Books relating to the history of hospitals in the UK
  • Books relating to medical ethics and the status and role of the physician

Archives and Facility

  • Collection of c. 250 portraits of presidents, fellows, and physicians associated with the RCP
  • Silver collection including special objects like the Presidents staff of office and the silver-gilt College mace
  • Six 17th-century anatomical tables used as teaching aids for anatomy
  • Symons Collection of medical instruments displayed within the college building
  • Online catalogue to search the collections, available for public viewing Monday to Friday
  • RCP building located in St. Andrews Place, London
  • Grade I listed building designed by architect Sir Denys Lasdun
  • Use of mosaic clad concrete influenced later public buildings
  • Building features a Moving Wall capable of dividing or uniting a hall
  • Hydraulic equipment and steel framework for the Moving Wall produced by Merryweather & Sons Ltd

Publications and Faculties

  • Two peer-reviewed medical journals: Clinical Medicine and Future Healthcare Journal
  • Occupational and Environmental Medicine is the official journal of the Faculty of Occupational Medicine
  • Commentary is the membership magazine published every 2 months
  • Regular reports, clinical guidelines, policy papers, and online resources published by the RCP
  • Online catalogue available for searching publications
  • RCP hosts six training faculties, including Forensic and Legal Medicine, Pharmaceutical Medicine, Occupational Medicine, Public Health, Sport and Exercise Medicine, and Physician Associates
  • Faculty of Forensic and Legal Medicine (FFLM) established in 2006
  • Faculty of Pharmaceutical Medicine (FPM) aims to advance the science and practice of pharmaceutical medicine
  • Faculty of Occupational Medicine (FOM) is the professional and educational body for occupational medicine in the UK
  • Faculty of Public Health (FPH) is a joint faculty of the three royal colleges of physicians of the United Kingdom
  • Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (FSEM) UK is the governing body for the specialty of sport and exercise medicine
  • Faculty of Physician Associates is the professional membership body for physician associates in the UK

Royal College of Physicians Data Sources

Reference URL
Knowledge Graph