Level 4 - Assistant Perioperative Practitioner

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The Assistant Perioperative Practitioner is the most senior support worker role available in NHS Scotland. These practitioners have developed clinical skills which are more specialised and specific to an area of practice and that of a level 3 worker. 

Example roles include associate practitioner, perioperative technician and assistant scrub practitioner. 

Qualifications and experience expected for perioperative support worker at this level of career framework: 

  • Normally at or working towards a SCQF Level 8 qualification in a health or social care related subject e.g. PDA in Perioperative Practice, or relevant HND
  • Has previous experience as a HCSW and/or appropriate skills and knowledge in a health and/or social care setting 
  • Completion of an accelerated workforce development programme such as the National Perioperative Training Programme: Assistant Perioperative Practitioner provided by NHS Scotland Academy
  • Numeracy and literacy qualifications – normally at or working towards Maths Numeracy at SCQF Level 5 as well as Literacy/English/Communication qualifications are required at SCQF 6 
  • At this level specific training, guidance or qualifications may be required by relevant professional bodies or legislation 
  • IT / computer literacy skills are required at this level of practice 


SCQF level 8 – examples include:

PDA Perioperative Practice

PDA Acute and Community Care

PDA Health and Social Care: Personalisation in Practice

OU - Diploma of Higher Education in Health and Social Care


The Career Development Framework for the Perioperative Nursing, Midwifery and Health Professions (NMaHP) Workforce aims to provide an infrastructure to support the career development, and the learning and development needs of perioperative workforce. This framework is underpinned by the Career Framework for Health.    

Support Worker Central  

Available on TURAS this site supports the development of nursing, midwifery and allied health professions support workers, working across all care settings in Scotland.

Professional Portfolio   

Available to all Support Workers who wish to use as an individual educational Portfolio to record evidence of their learning. The Portfolio can be used to assist Support Workers to record evidence of learning from experience gained in the workplace and through life experience, support access to courses, gaining learning credits and think about career progression. 


If you are interested in a career as a perioperative support worker visit NHS Careers  Scotland  

Listen to a short career video from Johanna Goldie, NHS Grampian. Johanna describes what she enjoys about the role and how she made the transition from working in retail to beginning her career as a healthcare support worker in theatre.