Key information

  1. Reference: ST0215
  2. Date updated: 13/09/2023
  3. Level: 5
  4. Route: Health and science
  5. Regulated occupation: No
Print occupational standard

Details of the occupational standard

Occupation summary

This occupation is found in the health and care sector. Assistant Practitioners carry out their duties in a range of settings, such as hospitals, clinics or in the community (eg GP surgeries). They may visit individuals in their own homes or in residential care where their wider team may include workers from both health and social care. They work in a wide range of health and care services for example diagnostic services, rehabilitation, orthopaedics, oncology, end of life care, mental health and learning disabilities. Assistant Practitioners are often hybrid roles aligned to local population and service needs and cross traditional occupational boundaries.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to work alongside registered healthcare professionals in providing high quality and person-centred compassionate healthcare and support to individuals. On a daily basis, Assistant Practitioners will assist registered healthcare professionals in total patient assessment, and in the coordination of care (including referrals to other practitioners) as well as undertaking clinical, diagnostic and therapeutic activities according to local population and service needs.

For example:

  • Assistant Practitioners working in rehabilitation services will order, fit and review equipment prescribed by the Physiotherapist or Occupational Therapist.
  • Assistant Practitioners working in radiography take diagnostic images and provide support to help to diagnose or treat a patient's illness.
  • Assistant Practitioners working in community mental health support adults or young people with mental health needs.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with

  • Patients, service users and carers.
  • Registered healthcare professionals, for example allied health professionals, doctors, registered   nurses, nursing associates, and healthcare support workers.
  • Social care staff including registered managers, care workers and social workers.
  • Administration, management and other non-clinical staff, such as porters, cleaners and receptionists.

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for working within the limits of their competence and authority to provide high quality, evidence-based clinical, diagnostic or therapeutic care and holistic support as part of the wider healthcare team. Assistant Practitioners report to a registered healthcare practitioner and they may delegate to, supervise, teach and mentor others including healthcare support workers and students. They may manage their own caseload and normally require only indirect supervision. However, they are accountable for their actions and must alert the registered healthcare practitioner in situations where they do not have the necessary knowledge, skills or experience.

Assistant Practitioners must communicate effectively and be able to adhere to strict standards, including legislation, when handling sensitive information. They promote a safe and healthy working environment, assess and manage risk, continually develop their knowledge and skills and support others to do the same. Assistant Practitioners will provide leadership within the scope of their practice and contribute to quality improvement in services by participating in audit and research activities.

Typical job titles include:

Assistant practitioner

Occupation duties

Duty KSBs

Duty 1 Act within the limits of own competence and within agreed ways of working, following relevant legislation, local and national standards, policies, standard operating procedures and protocols used in the workplace

K1 K2 K3 K4

S1 S2 S3 S4

B1 B2 B3

Duty 2 Contribute to the on-going holistic assessment of individuals

K5 K6 K7 K34

S5 S6 S7

B1 B2 B3

Duty 3 Deliver evidence-based programmes of clinical, diagnostic and therapeutic interventions within own scope of practice and monitor their impact

K8 K9 K10 K11 K36

S8 S9 S10 S11

B1 B2 B3

Duty 4 Promote inter-professional and multi-disciplinary team working with peers, colleagues and staff from other agencies

K12 K13 K14 K15

S12 S13 S14 S15

B1 B2 B3

Duty 5 Communicate complex sensitive information effectively with individuals, their families, carers and health and care professionals

K16 K17 K18

S16 S17 S18

B1 B2 B3

Duty 6 Maintain and further develop own knowledge and skills through recognised continuing professional development activities

K19 K20 K21

S19 S20 S21

B1 B2 B3

Duty 7 Support the development of others through role-modelling, supervision, guidance and leadership

K22 K23 K24

S22 S23 S24

B1 B2 B3

Duty 8 Promote the health and wellbeing of individuals, acting on opportunities to educate and empower individuals to maximise their own health and well-being

K25 K26 K35

S25 S26

B1 B2 B3

Duty 9 Contribute to the identification and management of risks to self and others to maintain a safe and healthy working environment

K27 K28 K29 K30

S27 S28 S29 S30

B1 B2 B3

Duty 10 Promote an evidence-based approach to providing health and care services, participating in quality improvement and research activity

K31 K32 K33

S31 S32 S33

B1 B2 B3

KSBs

Knowledge

K1: The legislation, policies, standards, local ways of working and codes of conduct that apply to own role Back to Duty

K2: The scope of own practice, limitations of own competence and who to ask for support Back to Duty

K3: The principles of equality, diversity and inclusion and providing person-centred care and support, including consent, active participation and choice Back to Duty

K4: The principles of a ‘duty of care’, ‘safeguarding’ and ‘protection’ as they apply to adults and children, the signs of harm and abuse and how to reduce the risk of harm and abuse Back to Duty

K5: The normal ranges expected when taking physiological, technical and psychological measurements and the significance of a variation from the normal range Back to Duty

K6: The types of assessment relevant to the individual’s physical and mental health and wellbeing and the factors that may influence and impact assessment Back to Duty

K7: The signs that an individual is in pain, distress or discomfort Back to Duty

K8: The signs of change in an individual’s health and wellbeing, including the indications of when to intervene within the scope of practice and when to escalate Back to Duty

K9: The principles of maintaining nutrition and fluid balance and the signs and symptoms of inadequate nutrition and fluid intake Back to Duty

K10: Clinical, diagnostic and therapeutic interventions within the scope of own role and the underpinning principles to select equipment and tools in the context of the intervention Back to Duty

K11: The signs that an individual’s health and well-being is changing as a result of a clinical, diagnostic or therapeutic intervention Back to Duty

K12: Ways to record and store information securely, including the safe use of technology Back to Duty

K13: The principles of confidentiality, duty of confidence and disclosure Back to Duty

K14: The frameworks and principles of team working including delegation, accountability and supervision in the workplace Back to Duty

K15: The structural and strategic environment in which health and social care services operate and how these impact on own role Back to Duty

K16: Methods of communication to use in the workplace, including how to overcome barriers and challenges Back to Duty

K17: The benefits of digital solutions for improving communication systems and practices Back to Duty

K18: The meaning of ‘capacity’, the differences between mental illness, dementia and learning disability, and the impact of these conditions Back to Duty

K19: How to identify and evaluate own learning and development needs Back to Duty

K20: How to use feedback to create a personal development plan Back to Duty

K21: Models of reflective practices used in health and care and how reflection can be used to improve own practice Back to Duty

K22: The principles and styles of leadership in relation to own role and place of work and the relationship between leadership and management Back to Duty

K23: The tools and techniques used to identify learning needs and learning styles Back to Duty

K24: The relationship between teaching, coaching and mentoring, and how to evaluate if individuals’ learning needs have been met Back to Duty

K25: National and local strategies, priorities, and initiatives for promoting and improving public health Back to Duty

K26: The wider determinants of health such as the contribution of social influences, health literacy, individual circumstances, behaviours and lifestyle choices on health and wellbeing Back to Duty

K27: The principles of risk management and the hazards and risks associated with the scope of own practice Back to Duty

K28: The principles of a duty of candour, and techniques for managing challenging situations, unsafe work practices, addressing comments, compliments, conflict and complaints Back to Duty

K29: The principles of infection prevention and control, when and how to select the right personal protective equipment for self and others and how to handle hazardous materials and substances Back to Duty

K30: How to move and assist individuals safely and how to move and handle equipment and other objects safely Back to Duty

K31: Methods and indicators used to measure quality, their application in health and care and how they inform a quality improvement plan Back to Duty

K32: The rationale and ethical considerations for undertaking research activity and how to review literature and interrogate the existing evidence base Back to Duty

K33: Methods for collecting research data and how to interpret and apply findings to own and others’ practice Back to Duty

K34: The structure and function of human body systems and how they relate to and impact on each other Back to Duty

K35: The relationship between health and well-being and the principles and philosophy of the biomedical, sociological and psychological models in providing holistic health and care Back to Duty

K36: The stages and processes of human development and how health and wellbeing needs vary throughout the lifespan Back to Duty

Skills

S1: Work in line with legislation, policies, standards and codes of conduct that apply to own role Back to Duty

S2: Work within the scope of practice, the limits of own knowledge and skills, escalating and reporting to others when needed Back to Duty

S3: Work in partnership with others to champion safe, equitable, non-discriminatory person-centred care and support for individuals Back to Duty

S4: Promote and maintain the principles of a duty of care, safeguarding and protection, always acting in the best interest of individuals and working across organisations and with other agencies to ensure they do not come to harm Back to Duty

S5: Undertake and monitor physiological, technical and psychological measurements using the appropriate equipment and tools within scope of own practice Back to Duty

S6: Select and use the correct equipment and tools to undertake timely assessment of an individual's physical and mental healthcare status within own scope of practice Back to Duty

S7: Recognise and respond to an individual in pain, distress or discomfort Back to Duty

S8: Interpret results of assessment in the context of the individual’s health and wellbeing, making appropriate changes or recommendations to the care plan within scope of own practice or escalating in line with local protocol Back to Duty

S9: Support individuals with nutrition and fluids in line with their care needs, taking action as required Back to Duty

S10: Undertake evidence-based clinical, diagnostic or therapeutic interventions delegated by a registered healthcare professional in line with scope of practice, and standard operating procedures Back to Duty

S11: Monitor and review the impact of clinical, diagnostic or therapeutic interventions on an individual’s health and well-being Back to Duty

S12: Record and store information related to individuals securely and in line with local and national policies, including the safe use of technology Back to Duty

S13: Report and share information related to individuals securely and in line with local and national policies, maintaining confidentiality Back to Duty

S14: Delegate work to colleagues in the multi-disciplinary team and engage in supervision Back to Duty

S15: Liaise with the multidisciplinary team to prioritise and manage own workload Back to Duty

S16: Communicate with individuals, their families, carers and health and care professionals using techniques designed to maximise understanding Back to Duty

S17: Promote the use of digital solutions to improve communication systems and practices Back to Duty

S18: Recognise and respond to limitations in an individual’s mental capacity Back to Duty

S19: Participate in training and development activities and evaluate the impact of learning on own practice Back to Duty

S20: Seek out and respond to feedback and engage in appraisals Back to Duty

S21: Reflect on own practice to improve practice Back to Duty

S22: Provide leadership and act as a role model for others within the scope of own role Back to Duty

S23: Identify learning and development needs of others Back to Duty

S24: Teach, coach and mentor others and confirm that learning needs have been met Back to Duty

S25: Actively seek out and act on opportunities to support individuals to maximise their health and well-being within the scope of the role Back to Duty

S26: Promote preventative health behaviours and support individuals to make informed choices to improve their health and wellbeing within the scope of the role Back to Duty

S27: Conduct and record risk assessments relevant to the activity and scope of own practice Back to Duty

S28: Uphold the principles of duty of candour, identifying and managing challenging situations, unsafe work practices and addressing comments, compliments, conflict and complaints Back to Duty

S29: Maintain a safe and healthy working environment for self and others, using techniques for infection prevention and control, including the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and supporting others to comply with policy and procedures Back to Duty

S30: Move and assist individuals, equipment and other items safely Back to Duty

S31: Participate in and support others in audit and quality improvement activities in the workplace Back to Duty

S32: Conduct research activity within the scope of own role and act on the findings Back to Duty

S33: Identify opportunities to improve quality in the workplace and contribute to local, regional and national quality improvement initiatives Back to Duty

Behaviours

B1: Treat people with dignity Back to Duty

B2: Show respect and empathy for those you work with Back to Duty

B3: Be adaptable, reliable and consistent Back to Duty


Crown copyright © 2024. You may re-use this information (not including logos) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government Licence. Visit www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence

Is this page useful?

Tell us about your visit

Help us improve our website