Career progression is from trainee clinical cytogeneticist (Band 6) to post-registration (Band 7) up to the position of consultant clinical scientist (Bands 8 and 9). Promotion is directly linked to passing exams during pre-registration and post-registration periods. Post-registration positions are advertised nationally and often require relocation.
Post-registration training posts at Band 7 are provided regionally by The National Health Service (NHS) . They involve rotation schemes to a number of hospitals to provide balanced training. A training record is kept which covers clinical liaison, service commitment, research and development, communication, clinical audit, laboratory management, critical appraisal of literature and data, submission of a project, casebook and case studies to obtain Part II of the Fellowship of The Royal College of Pathologists (FRCPath). This enables the post-registrant to apply for principal clinical cytogenetics and ultimately consultancy posts.
Clinical scientists are expected to achieve at least one further vocational qualification (for example, a Chartered award or membership of an appropriate professional body).
All post-registration clinical scientists are required to take part in continuing professional development (CPD). Networking at all levels can aid this and The Royal College of Pathologists also has a CPD scheme for its members. Maintaining a professional profile by presenting research at meetings, undertaking work exchanges abroad and applying for research grants is also recommended.
Heads of department and deputies in larger laboratories are employed at consultant grade, which is equivalent to medical consultant level, and may be involved in university lecturing. These extra responsibilities are reflected in the salary structure. Further details can be obtained from the Association for Clinical Cytogeneticists (ACC) .
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