Surgical Care Practitioner – Orthopaedic

Surgical Care Practitioners (SCP) are senior nurses working at an advanced level. They provide surgical and clinical care throughout the patient journey.

The role is considered to be a nationally transferable role, which has emerged to reduce waiting times and ensure continuity of care.

SCPs are registered non-medical practitioners who have completed a Royal College of Surgeons (RCS) accredited programme and acknowledged by the Department of Health.

The role of the SCP is now well established and has been shown to enhance patient care, maintain surgical services and support surgical training.

Surgical care practitioners within orthopaedic include:

Gail Etherington Joint Arthroplasty/lower limb/soft tissue
Tracy Harland Joint Arthroplasty/lower limb/soft tissue
Lyndsey Blackbourne Joint Arthroplasty/lower limb/soft tissue
Bindhu Thomas Joint Arthroplasty/lower limb/soft tissue
Andi Causer Joint Arthroplasty/lower limb/soft tissue
Emma Tindall Shoulder/upper limb/soft tissue

Skills and competencies under direct supervision of consultant include:

  1. First assistant to the surgeon in theatre
  2. History taking and clinical examination
  3. Liase with allied professionals and request further investigations
  4. Venepuncture and cannulation
  5. Preadmission clinic for Enhanced recovery
  6. Interpretation of ECG, blood results, x-ray, MRI, CT
  7. Independent prescribing
  8. Patient and staff education
  9. Consent
  10. Discharge
  11. Independent clinics and consultant led
  12. Audit work
  13. Risk assessment
  14. Perform Nurse led nerve root block lists
  15. Increase theatre efficiency
  16. Clinical supervision/education
  17. Commenced competencies for Fluoroscopy guided injection/Aspiration 2016

Within orthopaedics  there are 6 SCPs the role can be quite diverse, all the above named SCPs work in specific areas of orthopaedics but are trained in all areas of orthopaedic surgery and may assist in theatre with a number of consultants when asked.

Theatre work

This role requires expertise and knowledge within a specific speciality and understanding of the complexities of surgery

  • Mark and confirm/consent procedure
  • Prescribing
  • Liaise with theatre staff
  • Education of theatre staff
  • Ensure equipment is available and prosthesis
  • First assistant
  • Manipulation and reduction of limbs
  • Suture
  • Injection

Outpatient role

  • Take history of new patients and perform clinical exam to formulate plan of care
  • Order further investigations
  • Interpretation of x-rays, scans and blood results
  • List for surgery/Enhanced Recovery pathway
  • Clinical monitor of patients
  • Review patients following surgery
  • Discharge

Preadmission clinic (nurse led)

  • History taking
  • Clinical exam/clinical skills
  • Interpretation of blood results, ECG and clinical exam
  • Link with allied professionals to promote health eg cardiology, anaesthetic assessment team, haematology
  • Liaise with consultant/secretaries/theatre
  • Consent
  • Patient education
  • Review of patient medication

Useful documents

FAQs (176kb)
In order to view PDF documents you will need Adobe PDF Reader

APR code of conduct (51kb)
In order to view PDF documents you will need Adobe PDF Reader