NHS population screening: diploma for health screeners

This document explains the Level 3 Diploma for Health Screeners. It includes how to register a screener and apply to reclaim funding.

This document explains the Level 3 Diploma for Health Screeners. This is on the Ofqual regulated qualification framework (RQF) and is for non-professional screeners delivering the:

Qualification structure

The qualification consists of 13 mandatory units. These cover the basic knowledge and skills needed to work in a healthcare setting.

Additionally each screening programme has a number of programme specific units to complete. Download the full qualification structure in Excel format.

Successful completion of the diploma provides:

  • a recognised national qualification
  • evidence of transferable skills that support personal and academic development
  • screeners with the knowledge, skills and understanding to work in a healthcare environment
  • opportunities for career progression in healthcare

Awarding organisations (AOs)

The 4 awarding organisations (AOs) in England who can provide this qualification are:

There is no difference in the content of the qualification between the awarding organisations. Each AO provides the qualification in England to PHE requirements.

Approved centres

Approved centres (ACs) are:

  • the administrative hubs for the qualification and oversee and register assessors and learners

  • responsible for assuring the quality of the qualification delivered in local screening programmes

  • can offer the qualification for one or any combination of the 3 screening programme pathways

If you are interested in becoming an approved centre, please contact the PHE Screening Helpdesk.

Register a new learner: local programmes

  1. Contact the PHE Screening Helpdesk for a list of registered ACs providing the qualification in England.

  2. Decide which awarding centre to register with and contact them directly.

  3. Register the new learners and assessors with the approved centre.

  4. Apply to reclaim funding (if eligible). Details for funding are given below.

Starting the qualification

The qualification is made up of units. Each unit is made up of a number of learning outcomes, which are further broken down into assessment criteria.

The approved centre provides learners with the unit content, learning outcomes and assessment criteria when they register for the qualification.

Assessors for the unit receive the indicative content which details what the learner must cover. Learners should not see the indicative content for the units.

To complete the qualification, learners are expected to take:

  • 9 to 12 months (for full-time staff)
  • 12 to 18 months (part-time less than 15 hours per week)

Costs and funding

Health Education England (HEE) provide a limited amount of funding for new screeners to undertake the qualification up to Spring 2018. PHE administer these funds on behalf of HEE.

Funding is available to:

  • screeners new in post from 1 April 2016
  • a maximum of 2 new screeners from each local programme

To apply for funding, download and complete the reclaim form. The reclaim forms and proof of payment must be received by 16 March 2018 to allow enough time for a purchase order to be raised before the end of the financial year.

Contact the PHE screening helpdesk to enquire about additional funding, available on a case by case basis.

Assessing learners

Read the guidance on assessing the health screener diploma to find out about:

  • the role of the assessor
  • the qualification needed to assess the diploma at local level
Published 1 April 2017