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Medical Associate Professions

In response to the issues highlighted in the NHS Five-Year Forward View, the NHS has seen the emergence of new professional roles for non-medically qualified practitioners working within multi-professional teams as part of the continuing drive to provide safe, accessible and high quality care for patients.


In Autumn 2014 HEE commissioned a report entitled “Working towards a common education and training programme to support a route to statutory regulation for Physicians’ Assistants (Anaesthesia) (PAA), Physician Associates (PA), and Surgical Care Practitioners (SCP) in England”. Subsequently, Advanced Critical Care Practitioners (ACCP) were included within the scope.  These roles have been identified as important solutions to some of these workforce issues.

The report contained a review of the current education and training, career development and regulation of these professional groups, known collectively as Medical Associate Professions (MAPs).

Our work to date

We are working with partners to define the role of Medical Associate Professionals and the to provide clarity for employers, education providers and commissioners, current and prospective health professionals, patients and the public, and regulators and consider how the further development of these roles could be streamlined and supported nationally.

An Oversight Board (Medical Associate Professions Oversight Board) was established in June 2016 led by Professor Peter Kopelman and Professor Elizabeth Hughes which provides strategic oversight, expertise, leadership and governance for the HEE national work programme.  The Oversight Board will be responsible for further consideration and delivery of the recommendations.

Partnership working is crucial to the success of the programme and we are pleased to be working alongside:

  • HEE Patient Advisory Forum;
  • Association of Physicians Assistants (Anaesthesia);
  • Faculty of Physician Associates;
  • Universities UK
  • Royal College of Anaesthetists: Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine/Physician Assistants’ Anaesthesia;
  • Royal College of Physicians;
  • Royal College of Surgeons;
  • Royal College of General Practitioners;
  • Royal College of Emergency Medicine;
  • Royal College of Nursing;
  • Academy of Royal Colleges;
  • Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine
  • NHS Employers
  • NHS England
  • UK representative from each of the other countries, Devolved Administrations (Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland)

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