The format of the OSPHE is one that not all candidates will be familiar with. It is therefore crucial that candidates practice with the scenarios below and take up all available opportunities to attend mock examinations etc.

Sample scenarios

The examples provided below include all the information that is given to the examiners and role players as well as that given to the candidate. In all cases, examiners and role players have access to the briefing material used by the candidate. Also included in each example are summaries of the marking guidance (‘model answers') for each question.

- Morbid Obesity & Bariatric Surgery

- Exploring levels of hospital activity

- Climate Change and the Elderly

- Economic Recession and Health

- Primary vision screening in children

- Report to multi-agency alcohol partnership

Using the online examination platform

Access will be provided, two weeks prior to the exam, for registered candidates to log into the examination platform and practice using its functions.

Why candidates fail

The reasons for why candidates fail to achieve the expected standard in the OSPHE are variable but examiner feedback has identified the following factors:

  • Candidates not applying the knowledge they gained from the Diplomate exam
  • Candidates applying a face-to-face approach to the online exam. Candidates should instead undertake the OSPHE as they would in daily practice for online meetings
  • A perception by candidates that they cannot use knowledge outside of that provided in the exam pack
  • Insufficient exam practice
  • Candidates not planning their answers
  • Candidates not tailoring their interaction to the role players situation/job description and so inadvertently patronising or bamboozling them
  • Arguing with the role player. If a role player does not appear receptive, candidates should consider this to be part of their scripted role and focus on how they would approach this in practice
  • Not answering the question set, even when asked two or more times
Additional advice

Further information on how to prepare for and take part in the examination has been received by the Faculty from examiners. The FPH is grateful for their input which can be found here.



Final Membership Examination: Telephone number: 0203696 1484 / e-mail address:

Finance: Telephone number: 0203 696 1465 / e-mail address: