The Apprenticeship Standard is ST0215 – Healthcare Assistant Practitioner
For Full details of the standard visit the Institute for Aprenticeships website.
Assistant Practitioners work as part of the wider health and social care team and have direct contact with patients, service users or clients providing high quality and compassionate care. Assistant Practitioners work at a level above that of Healthcare Support Workers and have a more in-depth understanding about factors that influence health and ill-health (e.g. anatomy and physiology). Assistant Practitioner is a job title applied to a very wide variety of roles that have been developed locally by employers to meet individual service need. Upon successful completion of this standard, individuals will have obtained the core skills, knowledge and values/behaviours to become an Assistant Practitioner.
Examples of common work activities include assisting in total patient assessment, coordination of care (including referrals to other practitioners) and higher clinical skills such as catheterisation, wound care and discharge planning (1). Assistant Practitioners can be found working in a range of areas such as Cancer Services, Physiotherapy, Genito- Urinary Medicine, Orthopaedics, Hospice Care, Mental Health, Social Care, Community, Occupational Therapy, Learning Disabilities as well as hybrid roles that cross traditional occupational areas. (2) Assistant Practitioners will therefore develop additional skills and knowledge based on their employer’s requirements depending on the clinical or professional area within which they are working.
Responsibilities and duties of the role
An Assistant Practitioner works under the supervision of a Registered Practitioner (3) in accordance with employer policy, protocols and standard operating procedures. The Registered Practitioner remains accountable for the appropriate and effective delegation of activities and must ensure that the AP has the competency, confidence and expertise to carry out such activities. Having accepted the activity, the AP is accountable for their actions. In a situation where the AP feels they do not have the necessary skills or ability then they must alert the registered practitioner immediately.