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The SVT and the National School of Healthcare Science

5th Sep 2017

The SVT and the National School of Healthcare Science


As the SVT representative on the National School of Healthcare Science (NSHCS) Board I attend 3 meetings per year to facilitate the communication between the National School and the SVT. For those of you who are unaware of the history behind this, I will try to explain in brief.

Approximately 15 years ago the SVT worked hard to get our voice heard as a profession so that we were included in the national plan within Modernising Scientific Careers programme which one of the main aims was to make ‘Healthcare Scientists’ a registered group, standardising training and education and allowing regulation of the professions.

For any profession to become a registerable profession, a training programme has to exist, the SVT/members of the SVT therefore wrote the curriculum and training programme, deliver and continue to deliver the work based training programme as well as assess the trainees in their final OSFA, as well as, in conjunction with the universities, deliver the academic learning for the trainees, who now graduate as a registered Clinical Scientist in Vascular Science. The programme which delivers our training is the STP. The National School of Healthcare Science are the body which helps us to deliver this in a way that we would never be able to do as a professional body. As this is a relatively new training programme, there are areas which now need to be tweaked and developed to benefit the trainee as well as the employer.

The Board meetings, chaired by the professional leads for Physiological Sciences, bring together the professional bodies, the universities, the employer reps, trainee reps, lay reps and the Academy to discuss and resolve any issues raised as well as plan the future for the STP and HSST.

I report back to the SVT committees with relevant info for Vascular Science, as well as take any issues back to the meeting for further discussion.

I now aim to also report directly back to the membership in the aim of improving communications. This will either be in the Newsletter, or as a direct email from the SVT.


NSHCS Themed Board Meeting – June 2017

Membership Summary

The NSHCS has appointed a new Head of School – Bernie Ferry. She attended the Themed Board meeting and discussed her plan to develop the school even further than it already is.

Accredited Scientific Practice (ASP)

There is a lot of discussion around the ASP, this is where STP/HSST modules can be available to access individually, for example, the DVT module of the STP.

Employers wishing to consider such programmes will be able to contact the National School for Healthcare Science with specific requirements. The school will aim to work with employers and professional bodies to create bespoke packages  based on currently approved modules which meet service needs.

This will include the academic part of the module (with assessment from HEI), workplace based training (with assessment) and independent assessment (ie OSFA).

There will be a certificate of completion.

Fee’s are currently unknown.

Possibly providing OSFA’s twice per year

Further info on this process will be available on the SVT website shortly.


The NSHCS are requesting senior vascular scientist volunteers to be an assessor for the C1 component of the HSST (CVRS) at the end of Sept.

Please contact either Helena Edlin ( or Theresa Fail ( for further info, or if you would like to volunteer.


The School would like to encourage more vascular scientists on to the HSST programme. Please contact the SVT for more info.


Curriculum Review

There has been a new appointment at the NSHCS to undertake the enormous task of reviewing the curriculum for all specialities.

She is aiming for the process to be open from Sept. Once all specialities who would like a review have submitted an application, they will try to prioritise the order.

The process will then be maintained annually thereafter.

The SVT will form a stakeholders meeting and form a working group to take this forward.


E-Portfolio (OLAT) for STP

Procurement for a new e portfolio is ongoing.

 A gradual transfer over to the new system will occur between Sept 2017 and Dec 2018. All data from OLAT will be transferred.



The NSHCS and professional bodies are working together to try create apprenticeship levels where they are needed.

The SVT are keen to develop level 4 and level 6 apprenticeships for Vascular Science to create a full career framework from band 4 through to band 8/9.

Level 4 is well underway, this level will be equivalent to a foundation degree. There are numerous employers around the country who already employ a Band 4 Vascular Associate/assistant to perform AAA surveillance as well as some physiological measurements (eg ABPI and toe pressures). The level 4 apprenticeship aims to standardise this training and give a formal qualification to staff wishing to work at this level,

The level 6 is a much greater task. It was agreed that Vascular Science should engage in developing this level as it would create a full career framework for career progression from level 4 through to level 9. Sonography is also going through the same process, which means we should ensure that the professions align where they cross over.

The SVT will be putting a call out to any interested individuals who would like to be part of the working/consultation group to take this forward.


Dates for your Diary

STP trainee induction 11th September (employer and trainee)

HSST trainee induction 19th Sept (employer and trainee)


Helena Edlin

Lead Vascular Scientist – Central Manchester

SVT rep on NSHCS

Lead Station Writer – OSFA’s

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