I am contacting the Forum to inform you of recent, important developments in relation to the Voluntary Register of Clinical Technologists (VRCT). At a meeting held in March 2003, which was organised by the Department of Health (DOH) and the Health Professions Council (HPC), the extension of regulation for currently unregistered Healthcare Scientist groups was discussed. It was made clear that there is a strong Government agenda to extend regulation and this will be done as soon as is practicable. The meeting was informed that the necessary parliamentary time has already been laid aside to enable currently unregistered Healthcare Scientist groups to come under HPC regulation sometime during the 2004/2005 parliamentary session. As a consequence, state registration for Clinical Technologists is likely to occur around January 2005.

Representatives of the VRCT have subsequently met with the Chief Scientific Officer and the Regulation Branch of the DOH. They indicated to us that, along with Clinical Physiologists and Clinical Perfusionists, we were in an excellent position to commence the application process with HPC.

Unsurprisingly, this will involve a great deal of preparation and collection of data. We need to provide a vast range of evidence to convince the DOH and HPC that we are an occupation that requires to be registered. In the next few months the VRCT Assessors Panel, which administers the Voluntary Register, will be collecting evidence and preparing information in order to submit the detailed application to the HPC.

The VRCT was launched in August 2000 and is administered by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine in partnership with the Association of Renal Technologists and the Institution of Incorporated Engineers. The VRCT now has in excess of 1,300 registered Clinical Technologists. We believe that this figure represents around 25 to 30% of the Clinical Technologist workforce. In the coming months our aim is to significantly increase the number of Registrants. If you have not previously joined the Register now would be a good time to do so. Copies of the application form and the guidance notes for applicants can be obtained from the following link on the IPEM website:

IPEM VRCT web page

Copies may also be obtained via the IIE and ART websites.

Regards

Jim Methven

The Registrar
Voluntary Register of Clinical Technologists
Fairmount House
230 Tadcaster Rd
York YO24 1ES