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About practitioner development

What is practitioner development?

The Public Health Skills and Career framework (PHSCF) describes nine levels for the public health workforce. Practitioners are identified as working at level 5; advanced practitioners are at level 7.

Some individuals will be able to demonstrate that they have the public health skills at the practitioner level, while others are seeking to develop their skills and knowledge in public health.

FPH is focusing on the development of education, training and assessment mechanisms for public health practitioners, both retrospective and prospective.

FPH also aims to raise awareness of the importance of professional membership, to ensure public safety and the maintenance of standards, while supporting practitioners to find an appropriate professional home. This will be achieved by developing education, assessment and validation frameworks for practitioners seeking registration with the UK Public Health Register.

Who are health practitioners?

The public health practitioner workforce covers a wide cross-section of public health specialties in a wide range of settings, such as the NHS, local authorities and the voluntary and private sectors. Public health practitioners work across the full breadth of public health activity from health promotion and health intelligence, to health protection, sustainable development, pharmacy and nutrition.

The draft definitions, as defined by the work conducted by UKPHR, for public health practitioners and advanced public health practitioners are:

  • Public health practitioners have responsibility for specific areas of work, continually develop their area of work and support others to understand it. Practitioners are likely to contribute to multi-agency/multi-disciplinary programs of work. Generally practitioners will work as part of a larger team led by someone working at a higher level.
  • Advanced public health practitioners have responsibility for and expertise in, areas of public health and provide leadership in their area of expertise. Practitioners will normally contribute to multi-agency programs of work.

How is FPH involved in this work?

The Faculty of Public Health (FPH) is the standard-setting body for specialists in public health. It works to improve the public's health through three key areas of activity:

  • Education and standards
  • Professional affairs
  • Advocacy and policy

FPH has worked to scope the academic and professional qualifications currently in place for practitioners.

Contact details for queries


Tel: +44 (0) 207 224 0642


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