Level 8 qualification in Histopathology

Would you like to be involved in developing a level 8/HSST qualification in histopathology? If you’d like to be involved in developing the career pathway for scientists in Histopathology we want to hear from you.

The National School of Healthcare Science (NSHCS) are collecting expressions of interest to help develop a level 8/Higher Specialist Scientist Training (HSST) level qualification. They’re particularly keen to hear from Consultant Healthcare Scientists, Consultant Pathologists, or those who have equivalent experience or are training. Particularly those who have recently completed professional qualifications at this level. 

The NSHCS are establishing a Curriculum Review Group to begin developing a level 8/HSST qualification in histopathology in the next few months, if you’d like to join the conversation you have until the 30th November to provide your details here [Health Education Online Survey, opens in new tab].

STP Training Support

Louise Ayers, Head of Programme Support at the National School of Healthcare Science (NSHCS), has written a blogpost to encourage trainees and training officers to talk to the NSHCS when having problems. It includes advice on when trainees and training officers should reach out for support and ways in which the NSHCS can help, such as: with health and wellbeing, changes to training, transfers of training, training delivery issues, completion of programmes, statutory leave, part-time training, progression issues, conduct/capability concerns and personal relationship issues.

In the blogpost, you will also find a brief history of the NSHCS and an outline of their purpose. Further to this, there is a myth busting section to help dispel myths and rumours that the NSHCS have come across from time to time.

In the next blog the NSHCS will be outlining all of the activities they are undertaking to expand their support.

MAHSE and the Universities work hard with the NSHCS to ensure that trainees have support for all of their programme. Although our focus is on the academic section of the programme, we work with the NSHCS to ensure that trainees have joined-up support where it is needed.

Congratulations to Maggie Stubbs for MBE recognition

Maggie Stubbs, a member of the MAHSE Patient Forum, has received a MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2021 in recognition of her work on the HEE Patient Forum, for services to diversity and inclusion in the NHS.

Maggie has worked with MAHSE as a Lay Representative since 2014. She worked on the Pathways to Embed PPI in STP project and actively encourages those inside the NHS and Education sector to involve Patient and Public Representatives in their work.

Through her role as a Lay Representative with MAHSE, she has supported our STP and HSST programmes, encouraging trainees to engage with the NHS constitution, reminding them that the patient is at the heart of everything the NHS does.

Congratulations to Maggie for her award, we’re so glad she has received the recognition that she deserves.

MAHSE STP Research Day 2021 – Registration Open


The annual MAHSE STP Research Day returns in June 2021 as a completely online event. After the disappointment of cancelling our 2020 event, we’d like to invite 2020 graduates to attend this years event as well.

The MAHSE STP Research Day celebrates the achievements of trainees who have completed the STP. It showcases the excellent Research and Service Improvement that trainees have undertaken during their time on the programme, and allows trainees from earlier cohorts to see the types of activities that they could undertake.

The Scientist Training Programme (STP) is an intensive training programme and successful completion should be celebrated. Those trainees who have been on the programme in the 2019/20 and 2020/21 academic years, and those who have supported them through it, should be proud of their achievements in such unprecedented times.

The MAHSE STP Research Day is usually an annual event, which had to be cancelled in 2020. We have therefore invited trainees who graduated that year as well to join us. The 2021 event is being held online through a fully supported platform. Trainees will be able to present their research and experiences either via poster or oral presentation.

This year we are delighted to welcome Professor Berne Ferry, Head of the National School of Healthcare Science as one of our keynote speakers. We also have trainee presentations from a diverse range of subject areas, their talks will be accessible to a mixed and lay audience. We have posters from a number of subject areas as well.

You are welcome to attend the whole event, or parts of the event depending on your availability. The event will also be recorded and can be viewed on the platform after the day. Please register for the event to hear details of this. To register just follow the link at the top of the page to the event, supported by Shocklogic.

MAHSE STP Research Day 2019

Joint Statement on HSST Eligibility

Significant scientific workforce shortages at senior levels have been identified in several Life Science specialties, which have been further highlighted during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Higher Specialist Scientific Training (HSST) Programme trains Healthcare Scientists to consultant level, however HSST is currently not open to all individual scientists with the potential to develop and take on the role of a consultant scientist.

The National School of Healthcare Science in Health Education England, Academy for Healthcare Science, Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS), Royal College of Pathologists (RCPath) and Manchester Academy of Healthcare Scientist Education are pleased to announce a widening of the of the eligibility criteria for HSST. The new criteria will allow appropriately qualified senior Biomedical Scientists, who can demonstrate ability to work at Level 7 via academic and professional qualifications, to apply to join the programme. Both Biomedical Scientists and Clinical Scientists will be subject to the same HSST interview process to determine suitability and readiness. The qualifications to confer eligibility will include:

  1. HCPC Registration as a Biomedical Scientist, IBMS Specialist Diploma and relevant MSc
  2. HCPC Registration as a Biomedical Scientist, IBMS Specialist Diploma and IBMS Higher Specialist Diploma or IBMS 2-part Fellowship Special Exam
  3. HCPC Registration as a Biomedical Scientist, IBMS Specialist Diploma and IBMS Diploma of Expert Practice

Eligible individuals will also need to meet the requirements of the Universities to commence a doctoral level programme, including a First or 2:1 Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree in a relevant subject area or evidence of having written at that standard, and a minimum of four years working in a professional role. In addition, training departments will need to achieve HSST training accreditation through the NSHCS to be successful in the commissioning rounds. This includes demonstration of suitable workplace and research supervision at doctoral level, access to training to meet the specialism curriculum and HSS Standards of Proficiency, and senior level trust support.

All Life Science HSSTs must obtain Fellowship of the Royal College of Pathologists during the programme in order to complete HSST, in addition to the academic qualification and evidence of their workplace training. These requirements of the programme are identical for Clinical Scientists and Biomedical Scientists on HSST.

This revised admission criteria to HSST is endorsed by NHS Education for Scotland  – Healthcare Science. We look forward to working with all agencies concerned with the development of the next generation of consultant-level healthcare scientists.

All scientists who successfully complete the HSST programme or equivalence are eligible to join the Academy for Healthcare Science HSS Register and become a Fellow.

This change to the HSST eligibility criteria will apply from 2021 entry to the HSST programme.

Covid-19: MAHSE Update Regarding Covid-19 Contingency Plans

MAHSE fully recognises the unprecedented disruption caused by Covid-19 to both the HSST and STP programmes. We wish to assure all trainees and their supervisors that we are working tirelessly with the respective HEIs and the NSHCS on contingency plans for the upcoming academic year, to ensure that all academic study, for students on all years of the programmes, will be delivered fully and at a sufficiently high quality. As soon as such plans are finalised they will be communicated out to all relevant parties. In the meantime, we appreciate your patience and understanding at this challenging time.

Key information regarding the impact of Covid-19 on both training programmes can be found on the NSHCS website via the following links:

HSST: https://nshcs.hee.nhs.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-information/#HSST
STP: https://nshcs.hee.nhs.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-information/#stp

We hope you are all safe and well. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact admin@mahse.co.uk


Cancellation: MAHSE STP Research Day – 11 June 2020

With the current Coronavirus outbreak the safety and health of our trainees, supervisors and staff are our paramount concerns.

You will all be aware that the government projects that the next 12 weeks are crucial in dealing with Coronavirus. We need to anticipate more changes still to come and to consider some of our operations within these unprecedented times. We are working at University and National School levels on guidance to ensure the best course of action is taken.

Accordingly, we will be postponing the STP Research Day. The registration links are now closed. We appreciate that this would be disappointing for those of you who were planning to present at your first conference. We will be revisiting the STP Research Day once we are all back to normal and will communicate further at that time.

We hope you are all safe and well. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact admin@mahse.co.uk



Covid-19: Information for Manchester Metropolitan University HSST Trainees

A message to all Manchester Metropolitan University HSST trainees regarding impact of Covid-19 to your programme.

Dear Trainees,

Given the rapidly developing situation with COVID-19, we understand that many of you may be required to cover additional clinical work. In the coming weeks, we will be considering the many issues that will arise from the need to provide this additional service, and the impact this has had on DClinSci trainees. We recognise that this will affect your research, teaching and assessments but will mitigate for this as appropriate when the scale of the current situation becomes clearer.  All deadlines will be temporarily waived and will be addressed once the situation is resolved. Your pathway leads will communicate with you regarding these. We will aim to take a pragmatic view to ensure that trainees are not adversely affected, therefore we aren’t expecting trainees to have to take any further action to request extensions or changes to programme imminently.

Please be reassured that we will work with the NSHCS and mitigation will be applied as required. Your individual pathway lead will be in touch to confirm any cancelled teaching, or changes to assessment deadlines as required.

In order for us to work closely with you to ensure that all training is undertaken as required please keep us informed of advice you receive from your Trust.

Man Met staff have been informed that there will be no face to face teaching until further notice. We will be available on email to answer all queries and provide advice on your programme.

Below is a link to advice from NSHCS.


Best wishes

Professor Mark Slevin


MAHSE advise all trainees to continuously check the National School of Healthcare Scientists Coronavirus page to keep updated on key information as it becomes available along with specific guidance provided by your University; University of Manchester or Manchester Metropolitan University.


University of Manchester Coronavirus Information: https://www.manchester.ac.uk/coronavirus

Manchester Metropolitan University Coronavirus Information: https://www2.mmu.ac.uk/student-life/news/story/?id=11757

All programme leads and administrators will be available on email to answer all queries and provide advice on your programme. For any further queries or concerns, please contact admin@mahse.co.uk