Modernising Scientific Careers

Modernising Scientific Careers

Modernising Scientific Careers (MSC), led by the Chief Scientific Officer, is UK-wide government initiative to address the training and education needs of the whole healthcare science workforce in the National Health Service (NHS).[1] This aims to introduce flexibility, sustainability and modern career pathways for the healthcare science workforce, so that this meets the future needs of the NHS.[2]


Background & history

Modernising Scientific Careers is a scheme led by the Chief Scientific Officer at the Department of Health, Professor Sue Hill OBE on behalf of the four countries of the UK. It is analagous to the Modernising Medical Careers scheme for doctor training.

The genesis of MSC came from a series of stakeholder consultation events in early 2008 [3] and the June 2008 report 'A High Quality Workforce', part of the Darzi Review of the NHS.

This led to the publication of a policy consultation document [4] at the end of 2008, which outlined a revised training structure for the 50,000 plus healthcare scientists in the NHS, providing a single coherent framework for all the healthcare science disciplines.

The final policy proposals were published in February 2010 in the document 'Modernising Scientific Careers: The UK Way Forward' [5]

Key elements

There are four main elements to Modernising Scientific careers:[6]

  • introduction of a new simplified healthcare science career pathway at all stages of the career framework
  • new training and education programmes, incorporating both academic and workplace-based training.

This includes qualifications and awards and arrangements for assessment of previous 'equivalent' education and skills.

  • identification of regulatory implications for changing education and training
  • supporting delivery of the changes. This includes improving communication strategies, workforce planning , and education commissioning together with ensuring sustainable funding arrangements

Career stages

The new MSC career pathway has four stages:[7]

  • Assistants and Associates
  • Practitioner Training Programe (PTP) - Batchelor-level education
  • Scientist Training Programme (STP) - Masters-level education
  • Higher Specialist Scientific Training (HSST) - Doctoral level

Implementation in devolved administrations

Scotland The Health Directorate of the Scottish Government has agreed to participate in the UK-wide framework for healthcare science education and training, while retaining the best of current Scottish practice.[8] NHS Education for Scotland is leading on the work for Scotland and is participating on the UK-wide Healthcare Science Education and Training Board arrangements.

External links


  1. ^ "Chief Scientific Officer". Department of Health. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  2. ^ "Scientific Workforce". NHS Employers. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  3. ^ "Modernising Scientific Careers: The UK Way Forward". Department of Health. 26 Feb 2011. p. 30. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  4. ^ "The Future of the Healthcare Science Workforce. Modernising Scientific Careers: The Next Steps.". 26 Nov 2008. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  5. ^ "Modernising Scientific Careers: The UK Way Forward". Department of Health. 26 Feb 2010. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  6. ^ "Modernising Scientific Careers: The UK Way Forward". Department of Health. 26 Feb 2010. p. 4. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  7. ^ "About Modernising Scientific Careers". NHS Careers. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 
  8. ^ "About Modernising Scientific Careers". NHS Education for Scotland. Retrieved 22 March 2011. 

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