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Clinical immunology

Immunology is the study of the immune system. 

Training and qualifications required

There are 3 entry points into clinical immunology: (1) with A-levels or relevant level-3 equivalent through an accredited BSc degree in healthcare science - NHS Practitioner Training Programme (PTP), (2) through the NHS Scientist Training Programme for which you’ll need a 1st or 2.1 either in an undergraduate honours degree or an integrated master’s degree in a relevant pure or applied science subject. If you have a relevant 2.2 honours degree, you’ll also be considered if you have a higher degree in a subject relevant to the specialism for which you are applying. Evidence of research experience is desirable or (3) after gaining postgraduate qualifications or considerable relevant experience as a clinical scientist through Higher Specialist Scientist Training (HSST) or both.

Expected working hours and salary range

Staff in the NHS will usually work a standard 37.5 hours per week. They may work a shift pattern. Most jobs in the NHS are covered by the Agenda for Change (AfC) pay scales. This pay system covers all staff except doctors, dentists and the most senior managers. Salaries for healthcare science staff working in clinical immunology will range from AfC bands 5 to 9, depending on the role and level of responsibility. As a healthcare science practitioner, you’d usually start on band 5, with opportunities to progress to more senior positions. Trainee clinical scientists train at band 6 level, and qualified clinical scientists are generally appointed at band 7. With experience and further qualifications, including Higher Specialist Scientist Training, you could apply for posts up to band 9. Terms and conditions of service can vary for employers outside the NHS.

Desirable skills and values

Interest in science and technology, good communication skills, confident with modern technology and complex equipment, attention to detail, good interpersonal skills and able to work as part of a team.

Prospects

With further training or experience or both, you may be able to develop your career further and apply for vacancies in areas such as further specialisation, management, research, or teaching.
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