Entry requirements, skills and interests (anatomical pathology)

You'll need to apply for a post as a trainee pathology technologist.

Entry requirements

The main entry point into this area of work is with 5 GCSEs (or equivalent) at A-C, including English, maths and a science (ideally biology) for a post as a trainee anatomical pathology technologist.

Skills, qualities and interests needed

To work in anatomical pathology, you’ll need:

  • to pay meticulous attention to detail and produce highly accurate work even when under pressure
  • effective verbal and written communication skills
  • to be confident with technology and systems/processes
  • to be able to work as part of a team as well as use your own initiative
  • a good knowledge of anatomy and be able to identify a wide range of commonly found pathology
  • a good understanding of health and safety including infection control, manual handling and risk assessment

If you work in a role with responsibility for resources (such as staff, budgets or equipment) you'll need excellent leadership skills, and to be able to use your initiative within the remit of your job role.

A key skill you’ll need is ensuring that the bereaved are dealt with sympathetically and respectfully. You’ll be involved in arranging and conducting viewings, offering advice and gaining consent from the relatives for post mortem examinations.  You’ll also need to be aware of the diversity of religious and cultural issues surrounding death and act appropriately.

If you're applying for a healthcare science role or training position either directly in the NHS or in an organisation that provides NHS services you'll be asked to show how you think the NHS values apply in your everyday work.

The NHS values form a key part of the NHS Constitution.

Find out more about the NHS Constitution

Find out more about the training you’ll receive and registration for a career in anatomical pathology

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