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POST TITLE: Principal Health Adviser

A Principal will be appointed with the same essential qualifications and previous knowledge/ relevant experience as a senior health adviser but will also have:


A management qualification


At least four years as a Health Adviser two of which should have been as a Senior

ACCOUNTABLE TO:Clinical Issues to the Consultant in  GUM/ HIV

MANAGERIALLY RESPONSIBLE TO: A relevant Senior Manager/ Business, Directorate Manager



A principal health adviser will be responsible for one or more teams of health advisers.  The Principal

may work across clinics and may be managing one or more senior health advisers or other personnel.


To work with the health advisers in developing a health adviser’s strategy, in order to develop the health adviser’s role.

To manage major health adviser’s projects and develop new initiatives within the service.

To manage, supervise and develop the HA service to ensure provision of:


Advice, information, education and counselling to patients diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection such as chlamydia, gonorrhoea, herpes, syphilis and hepatitis B & C. To carry out partner notification, to ensure the attendance and treatment of contacts.  To provide ongoing support and counselling for those with associated concerns e.g. rape, termination of pregnancy, sexual identity, relationship and psychosexual issues etc.


To provide pre test HIV discussion and post test discussion and/ or counselling.  To provide follow up counselling and psychosocial care for HIV antibody positive patients as required.


1.      To work strategically with the health advisers to develop and coordinate their role.  To have a prospective plan for the health adviser team, and to develop a five year business plan in conjunction with the relevant manager

2.      Plan and implement additional services as necessary.

3.      To supervise and develop the health adviser service, to ensure the provision of their key duties which are: partner notification, pre and post test discussion/ counselling, sexual health promotion, counselling and administrative duties i.e. recall of patients.

4.      To coordinate and supervise the  health advisers/ senior health advisers rota and ensure  continuous provision of  a health adviser service, including outreach work and education in the community e.g. schools and voluntary organisations

5.      To standardise the quality of the health advisers work throughout the service.

6.      To initiate coordinate, implement and evaluate health advising policies, protocols through a research and audit programme

7.      To coordinate the representation of health advisers, senior health adviser(s) at multidisciplinary team meetings and other relevant meetings

8.      To recruit new health advisers/ senior health adviser(s) to the service.  To provide an induction, orientation and training programme for new staff.

9.      To implement a system of appraisal incorporating individual performance reviews for all health advisers/ senior health adviser(s).

10. To provide regular ongoing management supervision of health advisers/ senior health adviser(s), to promote and encourage their professional development.

11. To coordinate the clinical supervision of the health advisers / senior health adviser(s).

12. To act as a first line managers to health advisers / senior health adviser(s) i.e.-coordinate annual leave, rotas, statistical returns.

13. To monitor and evaluate the workloads of the health advisers/ senior health adviser(s) through statistical returns and address future development needs.

14. To ensure the effective use of resources within the HA team.

15. To develop and maintain links with related health, social and educational services available in the area and to liaise as necessary with statutory and voluntary agencies.

16. Liaise with other principal/ senior health advisers within the region/ nationally in order to standardise the quality of the health adviser service.

17. To manage an appropriate teaching/ training   programme for other health professionals as required e.g. for nursing staff, medical students or other statutory or voluntary bodies i.e. school teachers or pupils.

18. To ensure staff work within the legal responsibilities as laid down in the Venereal Diseases Regulations 1974 and the NHS Trust Act 1991.

20. To ensure staff work within SHASTD guidance e.g. Code of Ethics, Code of Conduct, Guidelines for Good Practice, PN Policy

CLINICAL RESPONSIBILITIES (It is expected that these will be a small component of the Principal’s work)

1.      To provide information to patients diagnosed with a sexually transmitted infection: how they are acquired, transmitted and treated.

2.      To provide education and counselling on preventing or minimizing the risk of infection.

3.      To provide effective partner notification to ensure contact(s)’ attendance and treatment by index (patient) referral as detailed in the SHASTD PN policy

4.      To stress the importance of medical treatment and follow-up.

5.      To discuss HIV with patients who may have been at risk or are worried

6.      To provide pre HIV test discussion and post HIV test counselling.

7.      To provide initial post-test HIV counselling for newly diagnosed patients, their partners, significant others and offer ongoing counselling and psychosocial care dependant on the health advisers training, experience and supervision.

8.   To provide a safe environment whereby patients can discuss their concerns and ask questions.

9.   To provide comprehensive assessment of patients’ other social, emotional or sexual difficulties and to follow up or refer on as appropriate.

10. To record interventions accurately and concisely in patient files.

11. To ensure patients are followed up adequately if they need to reattend for results treatment or counselling by letter, phone, or home visit, or through GP, FHSA or other means.

12. To keep confidential records for the purpose of partner notification.

13. To take a lead in sexual health promotion work within the clinic and community.

14. To keep statistics on all patient contacts and interviews to enable audit and evaluation of services

15. To liaise with other health advisers in GUM and exchange relevant information in order to facilitate partner notification.

16. To liaise with other local or national agencies as appropriate.

17. To establish good working relationships with medical, nursing, and administration staff within the clinic, as well as with professionals from other departments e.g. Accident and Emergency, Gynaecology, Psychiatry.

18. To take part in teaching programs as required for nursing staff, medical students or other statutory or voluntary bodies.

19. To continue professional development and training by attendance and contribution at relevant clinic/ Trust/ regional/ national meetings, seminars, workshops and conferences.

20. To participate in regular supervision and staff appraisal.

21. To be aware of the confidential nature of the clinic and work within the legal responsibilities as laid down in the Venereal Diseases Regulations 1974 and the NHS Trust Act 1991.

22. To work within SHASTD guidance e.g. Code of Ethics, Code of Conduct, Guidelines for Good Practice, PN Policy.

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