New healthcare checks for medical and dental students
Medical students will require additional health clearance before being permitted to carry out medical procedures with a high risk of transmission of infection, after the publishing of new guidance by the Medical Schools Council, the Dental Schools Council, Public Health England and Health Protection Scotland.1
All students and healthcare employees already undergo standard health clearance, which assesses exposure to tuberculosis and offers immunisation and post-immunisation follow-up for hepatitis B virus, hepatitis C virus, and HIV. The new clearance, which has already been introduced for all new healthcare employees, requires students and healthcare workers performing high risk procedures—exposure prone procedures—to be non-infectious for HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C.
Medical students will be offered the additional checks at the initial stages of their training. Conducting exposure prone procedures is not a mandatory requirement for General Medical Council registration so the tests are not compulsory. However, students who decline testing or who