*changes keyboards* ahh this ones much softer for typing with. But the keys are all in the ‘wrong’ places now, prepare for spelling mistakes!
Anyway an important part of the JET application progress is the medical form. This comes in two parts, the Self Assessment and the Statement of Physician. The UK JET website says that the Statement of Physician is “not always” required… but actually it is! So be prepared for the runaround, and ensure you get started on your application at the earliest possible date.
The Self Assessment is fairly self explanatory. A young and fairly healthy person will basically just be writing “N/A” a lot. The Statement of Physician is more complicated. It is in part a confirmation of what you wrote on the self-assessment and partly a statement from your doctor saying that there’s no other reason why you can’t work in another country for a year.
Because the statement will need to be delivered unto the altar of the NHS its best to get that part of the proceedings underway as soon as possible. In my case (and the case of most applicants, I’d suspect) I didn’t need to see the doctor as he was able to simply fill it in quickly from my records. I then went back a week later and paid £26 for the privilege. The surgery didn’t ring me, so make sure you keep on top of things!
Other pitfalls to watch out for:
– You are probably a recent graduate, so where are your medical records? Are they at home or did you have them relocated to nearer your uni back in those hazy days on the other side of 3 years of drinking, loud music and sleepless nights the day before a deadline? It can take months to get records transferred from one surgery to another, so find out now!
– Mind you, if they are still at your university you can pose as a student and avoid the £26 charge… as I did in 2010.
– Mention what the JET Programme is about, the form provides some basic details but it’s better they are sure. Also mention that some medications may not be legal in Japan. If you are on any it might be best to find out if they are yourself first, and look into substitutes.
– The bottom of the form includes an instruction to you, saying “Please return to the Japanese Embassy by XX November”. Make sure you mention that it’s you that needs the form back to be copied / put in with the rest of the paperwork. Otherwise a very confused diplomat in a non-JET department may end up with it!