New doctors would have to pass a universal test in order to practise in the UK under proposals to overhaul entry on to the medical register.
The General Medical Council (GMC) drew up the plans after finding not all doctors leaving medical school felt they were prepared to practise to the same level.
The watchdog also hopes to use Brexit as an opportunity to demand the same standards from all overseas doctors, who currently either face further exams or no barriers at all depending on where they qualified.
Under the present system each of the UK’s 32 medical schools sets its own curriculum and licensing criteria.
Terence Stephenson, chairman of the GMC, said: “That’s 32 slightly different ways of determining if a doctor in training is up to entering the profession.
“It can’t be right that medicine marks its own homework. So how do we make sure that doctors reach an agreed threshold of competence and preparedness?”
Research by the watchdog revealed some foundation doctors felt unprepared for the step up in responsibility and workload after graduating, while others were concerned about writing prescriptions and carrying our procedures like taking blood.
Under the Medical Licensing Assessment (MLA) all UK medical students will have to answer a common bank of questions for their final exams.
The GMC also hopes that the same test will be sat by doctors attempting to join the medical register wherever they obtain their degree from.