System is there to help health pros return to work

NHS Shetland practice education lead Marc Beswick

A CALL has gone out for health professionals who may have dropped out of the service to rejoin – and help is available for them to gain reaccreditation if needed.

The return to practice scheme is intended to bridge the gap in health care provision in the isles where recruitment of trained health professionals is proving increasingly difficult.


NHS Shetland practice education leader Marc Beswick, himself an occupational therapist, said that health professionals should not be discouraged if their registrations have lapsed.

Beswick said that his role was to support allied health professionals (AHPs) in Shetland who wanted to return to practice following time out from their profession.

He said: “It is often difficult, after a break from one’s profession, to find your feet again. The AHP return to practice scheme is in place to enable anyone with an AHP qualification to work again after a career break”.

The AHPs represented in Shetland include physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, dietetics, podiatry, orthotics and radiography.


Beswick said: “My objective as practice lead is to make sure that if people would like to return to practice we have a mechanism to help them do that.

“If they are allied health professionals that hold a qualification and want to regain their registration, we can help them do that.”

This could involve a combination of supervised practice and self study plus the gathering of evidence of skills in their area of work.

Beswick added: “I urge them to get in touch and we will help them through the process. In Shetland we have a very real shortage of health and care workers and will do everything we can to enable people to re-enter their professions after a break.”