Prosthetic Support Worker

Prosthetic Support Workers assist Prosthetists in supporting patients by manufacturing artificial limbs, called prostheses, to help restore their mobility. Prostheses are made to replace arms and legs lost through amputation or those missing at birth.

Prosthetists design artificial arms, legs, hands and feet to provide the maximum fit, function, appearance and comfort for the patient. Often, the Prosthetic Support Workers is involved in the design stage and will provide technical support and expertise in the manufacturing of the artificial limb. Prostheses can be made using a wide range of materials, such as special plastics, metals, leather and carbon fibre.

As a Prosthetic Support Worker, you would work under the supervision of a qualified Prosthetist, using their design and specifications to manufacture prostheses using the most suitable materials. Prosthetic Support Workers are also responsible for maintaining and repairing them. You would be expected to keep up to date with the latest manufacturing techniques and technologies, such as computer-aided design (CAD), and computer-aided modeling (CAM).

Your main tasks would include:

  • the manufacture, maintenance and repair prostheses
  • making and modifying molds
  • supporting and developing manufacturing processes to meet quality standards
  • ensuring work areas are maintained and kept clean
  • ensuring manufacturing equipment is maintained
  • ordering materials and equipment

In a hospital setting, you may work with Doctors, Nurses, Podiatrists, Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists as part of a multi-disciplinary team.


Useful skills include

  • creativity
  • practical skills and an attention to detail
  • good design skills
  • problem-solving skills
  • strong communication skills
  • IT and CADCAM skills

 Useful abilities include

  • ability to use hand tools
  • ability to work with different materials
  • ability to work to deadline
  • ability to work from technical instructions and designs
  • able to work to deadlines

To apply for a job as a Prosthetic Support Worker, you are likely to need a good standard of general education, including English, Maths and a science or engineering subject. Previous engineering or manufacturing experience would also be useful. Voluntary or paid work experience in a healthcare setting could also be an advantage.

The specific entry requirements will depend of the Agenda for Change (AfC) band (2, 3 or 4) for the job. The qualifications asked for may also vary, depending on the recruiting NHSScotland board. You are advised to contact each individual board to find out its specific requirements.

Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme

As you may be working closely with vulnerable patients, you will also need to be approved for membership of the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme managed by Disclosure Scotland.

Modern Apprenticeships offer those aged over 16 paid employment with the opportunity to train for jobs at craft, technician and management level.

The Modern Apprenticeship in Healthcare Support (clinical) at SCQF Level 6 and SCQF Level 7 is a framework for people interested in working in a clinical healthcare setting.

For more information about this Modern Apprenticeship framework, look at:

Contact your local NHSScotland board to find out if this Modern Apprenticeship is available in your area.

Working as a Prosthetic Support Worker in NHSScotland, you will be given the training you need for the job including:

  •          an introduction to the department and its procedures
  •          how to use the equipment
  •          manufacturing processes

Career development

During your career, you may also require or be encouraged to work towards an SVQ Healthcare Support (Clinical) at SCQF Level 6 and SCQF Level 7 qualification. Find out more about qualifications for healthcare support workers on the SQA website.

Find out more information from these professional bodies.

Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC)

The HCPC is an independent, UK-wide regulatory body responsible for setting and maintaining standards for health, psychological, and social work professionals. It maintains a public register of qualified professionals and works to improve industry standards and education. Visit the HCPC website to find out more.

British Association of Prosthetists and Orthotists (BAPO)

BAPO represents the interests of prosthetic and orthotic professionals in the UK. It aims to enhance standards of prosthetic and orthotic practice through its commitment to continued professional development (CPD) and education.

Prosthetic Support Workers can become members of the BAPO. They provide courses, conferences and seminars where Prosthetic Support Workers can update their skills and network with others doing similar work.

Find out more on the BAPO website.