Prosthetist or Orthotist

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Prosthetists and orthotists provide care and support for those in need of artificial limbs, or a device to support or control part of the body. They are also involved in rehabilitation work with their patients.

The Work

Prosthetists design and fit artificial limbs (prostheses) for patients who have either lost a limb or were born missing a limb. Modern prostheses sometimes have a pneumatic, hydraulic or electronic mechanism to allow the limb to move.

Orthotists design and fit items (orthoses) such as wrist supports, neck collars, braces and special footwear, to support a patient’s limbs or spine or to relieve pain caused by illness or injury.

 In either case you could be:


There is no nationally agreed pay scale for qualified prosthetists or orthotists, as most of them work for commercial companies. However, most prosthetists and orthotists are paid under healthcare scientist pay bands.

Under NHS Agenda for Change, salaries for healthcare scientist practitioners start at Band 5, £26,104 to £32,915 a year. With experience this rises to Band 6, £33,072 to £40,736 a year.

Senior practitioners are on Band 7, £40,872 to £47,846 a year. The current pay scales are from April 2021.


Workforce Employment Status

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Getting In

Prospects for prosthetists and orthotists are currently good. Some work in the National Health Service (NHS) but most jobs are either with manufacturing companies who contract out to the NHS or else in private practice.

You will find vacancies advertised on the NHS Scotland Recruitment, NHS Jobs, and BAPO  websites.

What Does it Take?

You should be able to:

You should have:


Getting On

More Information

According to the NHS Scotland Careers website, there are over 1,000 registered prosthetists and orthotists in the UK and more than 65 orthotists working in the NHS in Scotland.


Courtesy of NHS Education Scotland


The following organisations may be able to provide further information.

British Association of Prosthetists and Orthotists (BAPO)
Tel: 0141 561 7217
Twitter: @BAPO2

Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
Tel: 0300 500 6184
Twitter: @The_HCPC

The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) is the UK-wide regulatory body responsible for setting and maintaining standards of professional training, performance and conduct in the following health care professions: Arts Therapists; Audiologist; Biomedical Scientist; Chiropodist and Podiatrist; Clinical Scientist; Dietician; Dramatherapist; Occupational Therapist; Operating Department Practitioner; Orthoptist; Paramedic; Physiotherapist; Practitioner Psychologist; Prosthetist and Orthotist; Radiographer; Speech and Language Therapist. (The HCPC may regulate other healthcare professions in the future.) The HCPC website contains a register of all approved courses in the above professions.

NHS Scotland Careers
Website (2):
Twitter: @NHSScotCareers

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Career Area

Health and Medicine

Career Sectors

Alternative Medicine

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