Modernising Scientific Careers: The Cardiac Scientist Role and its Impact within the NHS

Friday, 25 April, 2014

Within most NHS hospitals the healthcare science workforce is likely to be the second largest workforce responsible for delivering diagnostic investigation and interventions. Yet their existence is still largely hidden, not only from their own individual employers, but also from the general public. The skills possessed by this workforce are critical in ensuring that the NHS is able to recover from the current financial pressures and also to deliver robust high quality services across patient pathways from primary, through to secondary and tertiary care. The vital role that healthcare scientists play in providing healthcare will enable transformation of services, enabling them to be delivered to the patient at the most appropriate point of care at any time required.Approximately fifty different professions are encompassed within the healthcare science workforce. These professions are grouped into four divisions of healthcare science; Medical Physics and Clinical Engineering, Physiological Sciences, Life Sciences and Clinical Bioinformatics. Roles for each profession are broadly described at four levels; assistant and associate, healthcare science practitioner, clinical Scientist and consultant clinical scientist. Within this workforce the Modernising Scientific Careers (MSC) training programme led to the development of a new cardiac scientist role in 2010, which sits within Cardiac, Vascular, Respiratory and Sleep Sciences under the Division of Physiological Sciences.This hot topic sets out to describe the cardiac scientist role, and to explore how MSC is supplying a workforce with the right skills, knowledge, values and behaviours to deliver 21st century services, as laid out in ‘The Delivery of 21st Century Services - The Implications for the Evolution of the Healthcare Science Workforce’.This is the third document in the eWIN Modernising Scientific Careers series, others include:

  • Workforce Evolution in Progress
  • Practitioner Workforce Development
  • The Cardiac Scientist Role and its Impact within the NHS
  • The Hidden Workforce


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