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News and updates in relation to Perioperative Nursing, Midwifery and Health Profession (NMaHP) workforce education and development.

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Latest news

14 May 2024

National Operating Department Practitioners (ODP) Day 

May 14 2024 marks National ODP Day, dedicated to celebrating Operating Department Practitioners (ODPs) and educating both colleagues and the public about their vital role in healthcare. ODPs have been integral to the NHS for over 50 years and became officially regulated by the Heath and Care Professions Council (HCPC) in 2004. The College of Operating Department Practitioners is spearheading the event, urging ODPs to showcase their profession's importance through activities like cake sales, information stalls, and activities such as school talks. The success of the day relies on these local initiatives.

What will you do locally to celebrate ODPs?

Remember to tweet and use #ODPday

24 April 2024

Consultation Survey- Graduate Apprenticeship Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Operating Department Practice, SQCF LEVEL 9  


Skills Development Scotland is developing a Graduate Apprenticeship in Operating Department Practice (ODP), in partnership with business and stakeholders.

Organisations including NES (NHS Education for Scotland) NHS Health Boards, HCPC (The Health and Care Professions Council) COPD (College of Operating Department Practitioners), SFC, Trade Unions, employees and the University of the West of Scotland have contributed to a development working group, which has created documents describing the Graduate Apprenticeship Standard, Framework, Occupational Profile and Qualification Specification.

On 1 July 2021 HCPC took a decision to increase the threshold level of qualification to the Register (SET 1) for Operating Department Practitioners (ODP) to degree level following a public consultation. 

This means that, from 2024, HCPC will only approve ODP education programmes at degree level. This decision will not affect currently registered ODPs, or any ODP who completes a diploma level programme before 2024.    


In this final stage of development, we want to consult with all Operating Department stakeholders to ensure they have their say and provide their feedback on the content of the new apprenticeship before it is approved. 

Please use the weblink to access the questionnaire.

You can find out more about the SDS new approach to developing apprenticeships here. If you have any questions or would like further information, please do not hesitate to contact 

We would be grateful if you could complete this survey by 10th May 2024. It should take somewhere between 20 and 30 minutes to complete. The survey will be open for three weeks.

SDS Apprenticeships Linkedin Post

SDS Twitter post

7 March 2024 

We are pleased to announce the 2024 revised edition of the Core Competency Framework for Anaesthetic Practitioners.  

This updated version is as a result of valuable feedback received from colleagues in Service. While core competencies within the Framework remain unchanged, this update incorporates enhanced competency sign-off procedures, including the provision of a final record of completion.  

These enhancements aim to improve the competency sign off process, providing enhanced educational governance and a robust record of a practitioner’s development journey. 

For more information and to access the Core Competency Framework for Anaesthetic Practitioners 2024 please visit our Turas page

19th September 2023

The Faculty of Perioperative Care invites you to attend their 9th Annual Conference on 6 -7 October 2023 in Birmingham.

The theme of this year's conference is "Perioperative Care in the Digital Era: Enhancing Patient Outcomes". 

The Faculty have carefully designed the conference agenda to address the challenges and potential benefits brought about by the latest digital developments in surgical patient care. The distinguished panel of experts will offer their perspectives and knowledge, giving a thorough overview of the most recent trends and effective strategies.

You can find out more information about the conference and book a place on the Faculty of Perioperative Care website.

29 June 2023

We are delighted to announce the launch on our Turas site of career video bios on the role of surgical first assistant. The production of these videos was made possible by the generous support of Dr Christopher Gee, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at the Golden Jubilee and Fiona Green, Surgical Care Practitioner. Chris and Fiona practice clinically together in the perioperative team and their experiences proved to be a useful way of discussing the role and remit of the surgical first assistant (SFA).

24 May 2023 

As part of our ongoing commitment to support workforce education and development planning, NES NMAHP and NHS Careers Scotland have prepared the Perioperative Workforce Guide. This document summarises the variety of roles that constitute the perioperative workforce.   

 It has been designed to be used as a reference tool, giving an overview of each role, associated educational and professional registration requirements, typical tasks performed and scope of practice. Its aim is to provide a clear and concise overview of the workforce options available. It may help inform recruitment plans, staffing models, and internal training and development proposals.    

For more information on the Guide and perioperative careers please visit out Turas pages


20 April 2023

Title change of the current Anaesthetic Assistant role in Scotland

Directors Letter (DL 2023 10) from the Director of Health Workforce Gillian Russell and the Chief Nursing Officer Professor Alex McMahon was issued on 13 April 2023 advising of the title change for the current role of Anaesthetic Assistant in Scotland. The DL sets out in detail the background and rationale for the role name change. It includes:

  • Anaesthesia Associate, is a protected role title in law
  • use in NHS Boards of the role title Anaesthetic Assistant (AA) means there is “a likelihood of two distinct yet related roles, with the same initials but different scopes of practice, working together in theatre services”
  • given the potential risks to patient safety it has been agreed that the alternative role name of Anaesthetic Practitioner would be appropriate
  • The DL therefore asks that NHS Boards in Scotland “replace the Anaesthetic Assistant title with Anaesthetic Practitioner, as soon as practicably possible, to ensure patient safety.”

We highlight DL 2023 10 and ask that you consider implications for workplace setting and share with colleagues as appropriate.


7 December 2022

The NES NMaHP Acute Team are delighted to announce the publication of the 2022 updated version of the Core Competency Framework for Anaesthetic Assistants. This is in recognition of the valuable role that anaesthetic assistants play within the theatre workforce, contributing to delivery of safe, effective and person-centred care.  You can acess the framework on the Core Competency Framework for Anaesthetic Assistants 2022 page. 


29 November 2022

“The Perioperative NMaHP Event: ‘Helping shape things to come’ - Translating pandemic remobilisation into positive future change, informed diversification of workforce, education and careers was held on 29 September 2022. Recordings of guest speakers delivering their presentations are now available to view 2022 | Turas | Learn (


5 July 2022

Booking is now open for the Perioperative NMaHP Event: ‘Helping shape things to come’ - Translating pandemic remobilisation into positive future change, informed diversification of workforce, education and careers at distance event on 29 September 2022. Full details on the conference and events page.


20 June 2022

Revised and updated sign off and verification process for anaesthetic assistant learners, to find out more please visit the Core Competency Framework for Anaesthetic Assistants webpage  


17 June 2022

It is possible for a 2023 ODP cohort to be offered prior to the national HCPC requirement to move to a degree only programme intake in September 2024.  For more information visit the ODP education webpage


17 November 2021

NES are delighted to announce that applications are open for Cohort 17 of the Digital Health and Care Leadership Programme (DLP). The programme is designed for experienced health and care professionals who have: an interest in digital health and care; a passion to increase the use of technology for the benefit of service users; and determination to develop their leadership skills. This is a virtually run programme involving live learning sessions, peer support groups and self-study time.   More information about the programme, including application guidance can be found on the Turas Programme Page. Any queries can be directed to


8 November 2021

The programme for the Maintaining Strength - Education enhancing the perioperative workforce, pandemic and beyond at distance event on 16th November 2021 is now available.  Full details on the conference and events page.


14 September 2021

Booking is now open for the Maintaining Strength - Education enhancing the perioperative workforce, pandemic and beyond at distance event on 16th November 2021.  Full details on the conference and events page.


7 April 2021

Representative delegates from 10 health boards across Scotland joined a very full programme of presentations and debate at the Strength in Sharing event. Recordings of presented material can be found on the event page


25 March 2021

We have added a new section careers in the perioperative environment to our site which includes role profiles, videos and careers guidance document. Take at look at the resources on the careers section


22 March 2021

Perioperative staff are working flexibility to support Scotland’s current acute care needs. This may involve deployment to support critical care.  Remember: varied educational resources are available to inform and support this including the Covid-19 specific Critical acute care resources which can be found on Turas Learn.

Full details on the events page.