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Job title

Senior Health Protection Practitioner


Centres and Regions

Pay band

AfC Band 8b


Managerial Accountability

Line manager

Professional Accountability

To the relevant registering/regulatory body


One of 9 designated PHE Centres

With regular travel within the geographical area of responsibility and travel elsewhere/nationally as may be required by the post

Hours per week

37.5 PW

Insert number of hours include if the post is open to job share


Job type

Permanent / Fixed term (delete as appropriate)



Public Health England (PHE) provides strategic leadership and vision for protecting and improving the nation’s health. Its ambition is to lead nationally, and enable locally, a transformation in the health expectations of all people in England, regardless of where they live and the circumstance of their birth. It will achieve this through the application of research, knowledge and skills. PHE is an executive agency of the Department of Health. It is a distinct delivery organisation with operational autonomy to advise and support government, local authorities and the NHS in a professionally independent manner.


PHE Centres have a key role in developing and maintaining relationships with local authorities, local resilience fora, NHS commissioners and the providers of public health services from the public, third and independent sector to support and influence the delivery of improved outcomes for the public’s health. Integrating the different public health disciplines, providing effective services and support for health protection, health improvement and health care public health with a focus on reducing health inequalities, PHE Centres provide a single point of access to the full range of PHEs specialist skills and knowledge.


PHE Centres enable a flexible approach to service and support provision, within a nationally consistent framework.


The new PHE Centres focus on a delivery model where staff work as part of multiple teams including place based teams, programme teams and functional teams. The place based approach supports local partners, particularly Local Authorities, across the 3 domains of Public Health, ensuring that local priorities and challenges are understood, that key relationships are fostered and that partners can access appropriate PHE expertise. It is recognised that staff will require support to establish this way of working.


The PHE Centre’s integrated business support function will deliver a service to all the teams in the Centre and will be key to supporting the implementation of the new model.


Key generic skills for all staff groups working at PHEC level include:

  • Leading and communicating - with clarity, conviction and enthusiasm
  • Collaborating and partnering - professional and trusting working relationships with a wide range of people
  • Building capability for all - strong focus on continuous learning for oneself, others and the organisation. All staff have a role as a local advocate for public health and their PHEC
  • Additional skills such a delivery through others, influencing skills, knowledge transfer, supporting evidence into practice and leadership and influencing skills will be supported for all workforces in the PHE Centre and included where relevant into staff Personal Development Plans (PDPs)


If required, and where this does not fundamentally change the role or level of working, the necessary training and development will be provided to take on work in a new area or theme to meet the business requirements of the Centre.



The way we behave as PHE members of staff will have the greatest impact in achieving our ambitions as an organisation. What we say matters but what we do matters more.


Our effectiveness depends on how we behave so we have developed the PHE People Charter which outlines the values and behaviours expected.


Our behaviours that underpin our values are to COMMUNICATE openly, honestly and clearly, ACHIEVE TOGETHER, working towards PHE’s objectives, RESPECT each other and treat colleagues and customers how we would wish to be treated and EXCEL by providing an excellent service, leading by example and driving personal development.

Please refer to full PHE People Charter.



PHEs local Health Protection teams provide a central part of how PHE works with partners to deliver its first function to protect the public’s health. They deliver this through a range of core functions including surveillance and monitoring, operational support and advice, education, training and research.


The post holder will undergo a programme of on-going development and education to build on existing knowledge and develop skills to provide specialist health protection advice and meet competencies required to undertake the role.



The post holder is a key member of a multi-disciplinary team providing the day to day acute service response. They will share responsibility with other senior members of the health protection team to provide oversight and management of incidents and outbreaks of infectious and non-infectious environmental hazards.


The post holder will require excellent generic public health skills and have specific lead areas of work involving partnership working with external organisations. They will actively assist in the development of joint plans and system wide priorities for public health action or improvement.


The post holder will contribute to the strategic work of the locality/patch based health protection team deputising if appropriate and will lead and coordinate defined complex areas of work including regional and national work streams in agreement with the Deputy Director for Health Protection.




  1. Use expertise and knowledge to lead the management of complex incidents and outbreaks of infectious diseases and non-infectious environmental hazards, in collaboration with the Incident Director.
  2. Assume management and supervision of the day to day acute response service and complex incidents to ensure high quality safe and effective delivery, if required.
  3. Manage and carry out continuing responsibility for a caseload ensuring accurate, up to date records of contacts/action by completion of relevant records and compliance with team handover procedures, in line with PHEs standards for record keeping.
  4. To utilise an evidence based approach to manage clinical/professional advice and discussions within the team and support and participate in the team’s formal case review process.
  5. To monitor standards, ensuring quality and consistency and to take action where any shortfall occurs.
  6. Contribute to and where required lead ongoing longer term management of issues relevant to a defined geographical area within their centre.
  7. Contribute to the PHE response during incidents in line with PHEs Emergency Planning and Resilience Response (EPRR) arrangements as part of the Centre’s responsibilities under the Civil Contingencies Act.
  8. Contribute to and support the PHE Centre’s input into Emergency Planning arrangements.
  9. May be required to participate in a local on call rota at Centre, regional or national level as required.



  1. Contribute proactively and where required lead the development and maintenance of effective systems for the surveillance of communicable disease and environmental hazards for a designated area of work.
  2. Proactively use surveillance outputs to inform and influence local and national Public Health actions, policies and strategies.
  3. Contribute to health needs, health inequalities, health impact assessments and influencing both national and local priorities.



  1. Develop and nurture key relationships with a wide range of individuals and stakeholders and take responsibility for the maintenance of professional networks relevant to role.
  2. Employ highly effective communication, negotiation and influencing skills to enable stakeholder relationships to deliver objectives with:
  • External organisations and wider NHS stakeholders to ensure collaboration in the strategy in the Sector
  • Internal leaders and staff to gain input to the development of systems, processes and activities
  1. Deal with complex and conflicting subject matter problems or in day work load in workshops, meetings, one to one communications and other events, comprising various parts of the business
  2. Contribute actively to the development and implementation of system wide priorities and programmes for public health action or improvement



  1. Contribute to research activity to complement the health protection evidence base.
  2. Develop and deliver appropriate teaching resources and activities across a range of audiences.
  3. Contribute to training programmes for Foundation Year Doctors and Specialist Trainees in the Faculty of Public Health training scheme as appropriate, and to the training of public health and health care professionals and practitioners within the locality.
  4. Ensure appropriate clinical supervision and mentorship systems are in place.
  5. Provide clinical/professional supervision and mentorship as appropriate.



  1. To be a visible, positive and competent role model and motivator setting and monitoring team professional standards.
  2. Ensure day-to-day operational delivery of the Centre’s health protection function, responsibilities and resources, planning and managing the physical resources that ensure the Centre HP function is fully equipped and fit for purpose.
  3. Direct, design and undertake audit as part of a wider programme of governance and quality/service improvement activity across the PHE Centre.
  4. Lead the development of policies and protocols for a specified range of health protection issues in conjunction with team members.
  5. Actively assist in the development of joint plans and system wide priorities for public health action or improvement.
  6. Lead and coordinate defined areas of work as agreed with the Deputy Director for Health Protection e.g. on specific communicable diseases, non-infectious environmental hazards, quality and training issues.
  7. Ensure compliance with all confidentiality and governance requirements within the team.
  8. Directly develop and contribute to proactive and responsive media issues.
  9. Proactively contribute to wider organisational development.
  10. Contribute to the strategic work of the locality/patch based health protection team and deputise where appropriate, using systems leadership approaches and skills.
  11. Assume lead responsibility for the systems and processes underpinning the Acute Response Service.
  12. Contribute pro-actively to the development and testing of the Centre’s business continuity plan.
  13. May undertake line management responsibilities and budgetary responsibilities as agreed with the Deputy Director for Health Protection.



  1. Participate in organisational and professional appraisal and revalidation as appropriate.
  2. Pursue a programme of CPD, including statutory and mandatory training, in accordance with the relevant regulatory body and PHE requirements.
  3. To actively manage and support the development of individuals and the team through appraisal, personal development planning, coaching and mentoring.
  4. Agree individual clinical/professional supervision or mentorship arrangements with line manager.
  5. Undergo a programme of on-going development and education to build on existing knowledge and develop skills to meet competencies required to undertake the role.
  6. To be aware of CS and KSF competencies and to be working to them as appropriate.



  1. The above is only an outline of the tasks, responsibilities and outcomes required of the role. You will carry out any other duties as may reasonably be required by your line manager with appropriate training as required.
  2. The job description and person specification may be reviewed on an ongoing basis in accordance with the changing needs of PHE Centres and Regions.



The post holder will develop working relationships and communicate regularly with a wide range of individuals, clinical and non-clinical, internal and external to PHE.


This will include:


  • PHE Centre teams
  • Other PHE divisions/directorates


  • Local Authorities                                                           Healthcare Professionals
  • Care Homes           Community and Voluntary Sector
  • Other Government Agencies           Local Prisons
  • Local NHS, including commissioners and providers
  • Local Resilience Fora and Local Health Resilience Partnerships




In addition to the job specific requirements above this role will require adherence to the following:


All staff are required to partake in a joint annual review of their work.  The process is described in the Human Resources Handbook found on the PHE intranet page.


Code of conduct and revalidation process for professional qualified staff groups

All staff are required to work in accordance with their professional group’s code of conduct and revalidation process as appropriate and relevant to their role (e.g. NMC, GMC, Department of Health Code of Conduct for Senior Managers, CIPD, etc).


Confidentiality and Data Protection Act

During the course of your employment you may have access to, see or hear information of a confidential nature and you are required not to disclose such information, particularly that relating to service users and staff.


In order to comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 you must not at any time use personal data held by PHE for any unauthorised purpose or disclose such as data to a third party.


You must not make any disclosure to any unauthorised person or use any confidential information relating to the business affairs of the organisation, unless expressly authorised to do so by the organisation.


Conflict of interests

PHE employees must not engage in outside employment that conflicts with their PHE work, or is detrimental to it. In accordance with PHEs Conflict of Interest policy, you must inform your manager if there is the possibility of a conflict of interest and register the interest where appropriate.


In addition, the Policy requires you to declare all situations where you or a close relative or associate has a controlling interest in a business (such as a private company, public or voluntary organisation) or in any activity which may compete for any contract to supply goods or services to PHE. You must register such interests with PHE, either on appointment or whenever such interests are acquired. You should not engage in these activities without the written consent of PHE which will not be withheld unreasonably. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are not placed in a position that may give rise to a conflict between your private interest and your PHE duties


Data Management

If you line manage staff and one of those staff members is a „system owner‟ of a PHE database, you will become the new system owner if that member of staff leaves the organisation and no other measures have been put in place and documented.



You are at all times required to carry out your responsibilities with due regard to the organisation’s diversity policy and to ensure that staff receive equal treatment throughout their employment with PHE.


Emergency Response

As a Category 1 responder, under the Civil Contingencies Act, 2004, PHE has a set of civil protection responsibilities which it must fulfil in the response to any emergency or major incident. You will be expected to contribute to the preparedness for and response to major incidents and emergencies (as defined in the PHE Concept of Operations) as required.


Health and safety

You must co-operate with management in discharging its responsibilities under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and take reasonable health and safety of yourself and others and ensure the agreed safety procedures are carried out to maintain a safe environment for service users, employees and visitors.


Centre/divisional directors - are responsible for coordinating health and safety activities in their centres/divisions and will determine the necessary management structure and arrangements. Directors will ensure that their actions and decisions at work reinforce the requirements of PHEs health and safety policy and arrangements.


Managers - are responsible for implementing the organisation’s health and safety policies and arrangements and for ensuring that risk assessments, safe systems of work, control measures and staff training are up to date and effective. Managers will inspect premises, ensure accidents and incidents are reported/investigated and assist in auditing health and safety management arrangements.


All staff must comply with any health and safety training: report all accidents, incidents, illnesses and untoward occurrences to line management without undue delay and must not interfere with or misuse anything provided in the interest of the health, safety and welfare of other employees.


Risk management

All staff have a responsibility to report all clinical and non-clinical accidents or incidents promptly and when requested, to co-operate with any investigation undertaken.


Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults and Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) (if applicable)


If the post holder is required to have contact with vulnerable adults or persons under the age of 18 then the post holder will be subject to a criminal record check from the Disclosure and Barring Service prior to the appointment being confirmed. The disclosure will include details of cautions, reprimands and final warnings, as well as convictions if applicable.


All staff must be familiar with and adhere to the PHE child protection and safeguarding adult and children policies and procedures. Staff must comply with all statutory legislation and guidance relating to safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.  All staff are required to attend child protection and safeguarding adult’s awareness training, additional training and supervision regarding child protection relevant to their position and role.





Person specification








Allied Health Professional with current professional registration e.g. UKPHR


Master’s in Public health, or higher degree in a related subject, or evidence of CPD in health protection and documented experience at master’s level practice


Recognised qualification in Infection Prevention and Controlor demonstrable equivalent experience


Recognised teaching qualification or equivalent experience, e.g. ENB 998, PGCE or NVQ Level 4 Certificate in Education


Professional Public Health qualification and registration e.g. Specialist Community Public Health (SCPHN) part of the NMC Register or UK PH Register for practitioners (duplication)


Knowledge and experience


Extensive experience in a health protection role at a senior level with specialist knowledge and expertise in Health Protection


An understanding of and ability to work under the current Health and Social Care Act (e.g. safe guarding vulnerable adults; data protection, information governance)


Proven experience of managing others in a managerial or supervisory role including performance management and appraisal and development


Proven experience and ability to prioritise own work effectively and be able to direct activities of/to others including managing and motivating a team and reviewing individual standards



Ability to identify areas for development and delivery of training programmes ensuring national and strategic objectives


Experience of leading and maintaining quality and governance frameworks


Proven experience of leading and developing robust audit and service improvement practices


Ability to identify areas for policy development and experience of delivering these for service improvement utilising a variety of literature and resources


Leadership and management of projects (e.g. Quality Improvement and research)


Involvement and co-ordination of public health initiatives


Incident and outbreak investigation and management


Ability to undertake on call responsibility for public health


Sound knowledge and understanding of the wider public health agenda


Working knowledge of the principles of epidemiology


Experience of effectively engaging with the media e.g. reactive press statement


Experience of developing and delivering training programmes on a wide range of topics including to trainees, pre and post registration


Experience of professional supervision/mentorship including supporting public health trainees. a project supervisor – merged two elements that were repetitive


Experience of project principles techniques and tools such as Prince 2 and Managing Successful Projects


Understanding of public health law


Skills and capabilities

Highly effective verbal, written and presentation communications skills; capable of constructing and delivering clear ideas and concepts concisely and accurately for diverse audiences


Proven ability to build trusted stakeholder relationships networks in a politically sensitive and/or changing environment


Ability to interpret, analyse and disseminate complex and/or sensitive information in a concise yet insightful way, pre-empting and evaluating issues and recommending appropriate course of action(s) to large and influential groups


Proven capability to plan over short, medium and long-term timeframes and adjust plans and resource requirements accordingly


Evidence of ability to handle challenging issues taking a problem solving approach to ensure proactive and effective resolution


Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office including Word, and Excel


Experience of clinical and/ or professional supervision/mentorship



Evidence of ongoing CPD and committed to self-development and willing to share experience with others to influence practice


Ability to prioritise own work effectively and be able to direct activities of others including managing and motivating a team and reviewing individual standards


Experience of leadership within a changing environment


Experience of budget management and financial processes


Evidence of understanding of the principles of workforce profiles, strategic workforce planning and workforce deployment issues


Equality and diversity

An understanding of and commitment to equality of opportunity and good working relationships, both in terms of day-to-day working practices, and in relation to management systems and has the ability to take actions which support and promote this agenda


*Assessment will take place with reference to the following information

A = Application form I = Interview C = Certificate T = Test




All staff should be aware of and working towards the key core competencies as set out in Civil Service Competency Framework 2010-2017 and KSF [for those on AfC Terms and Conditions] as appropriate.