Working life (CN)

This page provides useful information about the roles and responsibilities of clinical neurophysiologists, where they work, who they work with and what they feel about their role.

“I have a strong interest in neurosciences and wanted a job that would require patient contact, and both technical and practical skills. The freedom from continuity of clinical care and onerous on-call demands are also attractive benefits and allow me to achieve a reasonable work-life balance.” (Clinical neurologist)

How your time is spent

Clinical neurophysiologists perform the clinical lead role within a department. They work with healthcare scientists specialising in neurophysiology and managerial staff to ensure its smooth running. They provide supervision and clinical support to technical staff in the department, on the wards and in theatre.

Most days involve undertaking electromyography (EMG) clinics to diagnose neuromuscular conditions and electroencephalogram (EEG) reporting sessions. On average, neurophysiologists see around five EMG patients and report ten EEGs per day. They also supervise a similar number of procedures undertaken by technicians and SPRs.

The job may also include sub-specialty work, supervision and teaching and managerial roles and committee work.

On-call and working hours

Clinical neurophysiology is mainly delivered during normal working hours. Many departments also provide an out-of-hours service for emergencies. Just over 25% of consultants say they are routinely on-call at weekends.

A sizeable proportion of the work is with outpatients, but importantly the service also supports inpatient care, intensive therapy units (ITUs) and theatres.

Patient referrals to neurophysiology originate from many specialties, particularly neurology and neurosurgery. Other referrals are from:

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