What are the benefits of HCPC Registration?
The Health and Care Professions Council’s role is to protect the public. By law, people must be registered with HCPC to work in the UK in a range of professions using protected titles including Clinical Scientist and Biomedical Scientist. The HCPC only register people who meet the HCPC standards so that they can practise safely and effectively. The HCPC also make sure that someone who has trained outside of the UK has met the same standards before they can be put on the register.
Benefits of joining the HCPC register include:
- Legal entitlement to practice autonomously under the titles “Clinical Scientist” or “Biomedical Scientist” in the UK. These, and other titles, are protected and reserved under law.
- It promotes patient safety – the HCPC can take action if professionals on the register do not meet the required standards.
- It demonstrates your commitment to maintaining standards of education, competence and conduct and provides assurance for employers, patients and the public.
- It helps to develop common standards for all Healthcare Scientist practice. The HCPC set the standards required for registration, thereby quality assuring education, training and workforce standards.
- Expansion of roles can be made more easily via regulated groups e.g the proposal to amend the medical entitlements of six HCPC professions, including clinical scientists and biomedical scientists, to supply and administer medicines using a Patient Group Direction. This could lead to career development opportunities
- Participation in Continuing Professional Development (CPD) activities is a requirement for the HCPC registration – employers may preferentially provide funding for training where it is essential to fulfil this requirement.
- Using the same protected title across all healthcare science specialisms increases recognition. This raises the profile of Healthcare Scientists and provides reassurance to other Healthcare Professionals, Employers, Professional Bodies and the public that you have the appropriate education, training and experience to provide clinical advice affecting patient care.
- Some trusts/specialisms have implemented HCPC registration as part of the banding structure, allowing movement to higher bands more possible if registered.
- Many senior management roles require applicants to be on a statutory register. Lack of this may put Healthcare Scientists at a disadvantage compared to other professions competing for these roles, e.g Registered Nurses, Allied Health Professionals.
- It is a necessary step to enable entrance onto the Higher Specialist Scientific Training (HSST) programme or to gain the Higher Specialist Scientific Equivalence (HSSE) certificate necessary to obtain Consultant Clinical Scientist roles.
- Awarding bodies funding Clinical Academic careers are moving towards accepting applications from professions indicated by their regulatory bodies. This means that some funding may not be available to professionals not on a statutory register.
- HCPC registration can be used to satisfy the public that you are practising safely as a professional including private clinical work.
How do I join the HCPC Statutory register as a Clinical Scientist?
Graduates of the Scientist Training Programme (STP) will receive a “Certificate of Completion” from the School. Prior to 2020, the STP “Certificate of Attainment” issued by the Academy for Healthcare Science (AHCS), as the HCPC’s approved Education Provider, could be used to register with the HCPC. In 2020, the School achieved the status of Education Provider with the HCPC and STP graduates can now send their Certificate of Completion directly to the HCPC.
The AHCS has developed an equivalence assessment process for individuals who have undertaken training, hold qualifications and/or have considerable professional experience, and who wish to show that these are equivalent to the STP and apply for Statutory Registration with the HCPC. Click the link below for further details about equivalence.
The Association of Clinical Scientists (ACS) and the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS) have also developed equivalence assessment processes.external
Sources of support
Use available contacts:
- Lead Scientist in Trust
- Trust Learning Lead
- Training Officer
- Other Registered Clinical Scientists
- Professional Body
Visit these websites for further information.external