Entry requirements and registration
Read more about some of the entry routes into public health knowledge and intelligence roles and information about registration.
There is no standard national entry route into public health knowledge and intelligence roles, although various schemes and training programmes exist, mostly at regional level.
Find out more below about different entry points including apprenticeships, graduate schemes as well as any registration requirements for more senior roles.
Apprenticeships are available in health informatics, intelligence analysis and libraries, archives, records and information management services.
Those with an undergraduate degree (eg maths or statistics, social science, geography, health informatics) may enter a graduate training programme (eg analyst training). The NHS Graduate Management Training Scheme has a health informatics strand for graduates with a relevant degree. Those with a postgraduate degree (eg MSc or PhD in Public Health or Epidemiology) may enter a postgraduate training programme (eg in Field Epidemiology).
Working with the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities
The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities runs a two-year postgraduate Field Epidemiology training programme which aims to provide state-of-the-art training to those who already have public health experience and want to work in field epidemiology.
Within the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, there are also a small number of training schemes for those wishing to enter public health knowledge and intelligence roles. The Office for Health Improvement and Disparities also offers publicly available short courses, lasting 1-2 weeks, for the development of local analysts. These courses tend to focus on introducing staff to work in public health, understanding data sources and techniques, applying them in practical settings, and management skills. However, much learning takes place on the job rather than through formal schemes.
More senior staff are often recruited into the public health knowledge and intelligence roles having gained other relevant professional experience (eg from roles in the NHS, the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities or local authorities) possibly including formal registration with a professional body (such as the General Medical Council, General Dental Council or UK Public Health Register). Development then comes through routes such as university modules or a Master’s degree in Public Health.
Public health library and knowledge roles
For these roles, you are likely to need to qualify as a chartered library and knowledge professional through membership of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP). This requires achieving skills in traditional librarianship, such as cataloguing, collections management, advanced searching, knowledge management and information architecture.
Health informatics professionals
For these roles, you can choose to become a member of the Faculty of Clinical Informatics (FCI) and the Federation for Informatics Professionals (FEDIP).
For these roles, you can choose to register with the Royal Statistical Society as a graduate statistician (for those gaining a UK honours degree in statistics or a degree with substantial statistical content) or as a chartered statistician (for those with a UK honours degree, plus at least five years’ approved professional training and experience).
Public health practitioners
Staff working in public health intelligence can also choose to register with UKPHR as a public health practitioner, provided that they meet the required standards.
Public health consultants or specialists
A consultant leading an intelligence team or specialising in knowledge and intelligence will be registered with either the General Medical Council (GMC) in public health medicine, the General Dental Council (GDC) in dental public health, or with the UK Public Health Register (UKPHR) (from 2016, the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) as a specialist in public health.