The Academy for Healthcare Science is seeking evidence of staff shortages in Healthcare Science professions to feed into the Government’s review of the National Shortage Occupations List (NSOL).
The Centre for Workforce Intelligence is currently reviewing those health professions that are in the NSOL, on behalf of the Department of Health. The NSOL is primarily used to help inform immigration policy, with professions on the list more able to recruit non-immigrants, but it also informs the wider health and care system.
For a profession to be on the NSOL, it has to be Skilled, in Absolute Shortage and Sensible (ie . would need recruitment from outside the). A profession in ‘Absolute Shortage‘ is defined as:
- Where there is evidence of a national shortage of supply within the labour pool in England
- Where there is evidence that the shortage exists across all geographic regions within England
- Where it is clear that the shortage is ongoing and sustained
- Where the shortage has demonstrably not been resolved through mechanisms such as increasing the attractiveness of a specialty and/or profession. Previous inclusion on the NSOL may be taken as an indicator that inclusion has no merit
- Where there is evidence that the shortage cannot be sensibly met by recruiting from other UK countries
- Where there is evidence that the shortage cannot be sensibly met by recruiting from within the European Economic Area ( ).
When the NSOL was last updated in 2012, Healthcare Sciences roles removed from the list due to lack of suitable evidence included:
- Cardiac physiologist
- Clinical vascular scientist
- Respiratory physiologist
- Sleep physiologist
- Healthcare science resonance imaging
However, it was recognised that the status these roles would need to be reviewed in 2014 when the number of people coming through Modernising Scientific Careers courses was clearer.
The three Healthcare Science roles maintained in the list were:
- Clinical neurophysiologist
- Nuclear medicine scientist and technologist
- Radiotherapy physics scientist and technologist
All three were expected to have shortages lasting 5-7 years.
Call for Evidence
The Academy for Healthcare Science is seeking to provide a consolidated response to the survey on behalf of Healthcare Science and we are in discussion with Professional Bodies to gather the evidence. If you have evidence on any staffing shortage in your profession please send it through to by 26 June 2014.