About this course


Eligibility criteria for Approved Clinician Approval

In order to assess competency and experience, the Secretary of State requires that potential applicants seeking AC approval from these other eligible professional groups submit a portfolio to the relevant regional approval panel for their consideration, and where appropriate approval. 

Under the Statutory Instructions set by the Secretary of State for Health in 2015, [document can be found here] there are five eligible professional groups who may apply for AC status via the portfolio route alongside, registered medical practitioners who are included on the GMC Specialist Register for Psychiatry. These professional groups are:

  • Registered medical practitioners who are not already on the GMC Specialist Register for Psychiatry
  • Practitioner psychologists, who are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council
  • First level nurses, who are registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council and practice mental health or learning disabilities nursing
  • Occupational therapists, registered with the Health and Care Professions Council and practice mental health or learning disabilities
  • Social workers, registered with the Health and Care Professions Council 

If an aspired applicant intends to proceed with seeking AC approval, they should note that they will be required to evidence comprehensive demonstration of eight key competencies, as outlined in the Secretary of State’s Statutory Instructions.


What should the portfolio encompass?

In seeking AC approval, applicants will need to submit a portfolio to the relevant Regional Approval Panel. This portfolio will need to comprehensively and coherently present evidence which is of both sufficient breadth and depth to allow the assessing panel to make judgement of each of the eight competencies outlined in the Portfolio Guidance and New Role Document.


The process for applying for AC approval:

Each regional approval panel runs workshops (approx. 3 - 4 times a year) which aim to support applicants’ understanding of both portfolio content requirements and the associated application process.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend a session prior to, or during, their application.

Please see the dates and times below should you wish to attend the workshop in the near future.

If you would like to know more about the eligibility criteria for approval, please contact your Regional Approval Office.

Contact details for London Region Panel: s12acadmin.cnwl@nhs.net  
Tel: 0208 869 3515

Section 12(2) and Approved Clinician Approvals Panel
Mental Health Centre, Northwick Park Hospital 
Watford Road 
Harrow HA1 3UJ

Skills You will Learn

 By the end of this workshop, participants are able to:

a) establish a comprehensive understanding of the role, legal responsibilities and key functions of the Approved Clinician and Responsible Clinician;

b) understand the Criteria and Eligibility for Approved Clinician approval;

c) Understand the Approved Clinician Competencies;

d) understand the Approved Clinician approval process and the requirements for portfolio application.    

Structure of the Day

The workshop will run from 10am to 4pm on Ms Teams.


13 November 2024


10:00 am - 04:00 pm


Full day




  • Medical/dental
  • Allied health
  • Nursing
  • Psychological
  • Any Health Care Professional



Approved Clinician Approval via the Portfolio Route