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RCSEng and RCSEd Comment on Regulation for Physician Associates and Physicians’ Assistants in Anaesthesia

12 October 2018 4:52pm

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The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock, has announced the introduction of statutory regulation for Physician Associates and Physicians’ Assistants (Anaesthesia). Alongside this, a new legislative framework will enable regulation for other Medical Associate Professions (MAPs) roles as this case is made.

Responding to the Secretary of State’s intention to bring forward legislation the Royal College of Surgeons of England (RCSEng) and the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSEd) have issued a joint statement:
“It’s crucial that we address the shortage of doctors trained to work in the NHS but we should also embrace innovative ways of working which improve patient care. There has been agreement for some time that in order for the NHS and patients to benefit fully it is vital that roles such as Physician Associates and Surgical Care Practitioners are regulated. It is astonishing they have not been regulated before now.

“Today’s announcement of intended regulation for Physician Associates and Physicians’ Assistants (Anaesthesia) is an important step in the right direction. The RCSEng and RCSEd hopes that the new legislative framework that will be developed will also allow regulation for Surgical Care Practitioners to be brought forward very soon. 

“With the appropriate training and support these roles improve the quality of care patients receive and allow consultant surgeons and doctors in training more time to operate. Today’s announcement acknowledges the important part these roles are now playing.”