A guide to ESR coding for Advanced Practitioner roles

A guide to ESR coding – version 2 October 2022


The expectation regarding increased use of advanced practice roles is threaded throughout the NHS People Plan and is a key part of the workforce transformation required to deliver the NHS Long Term Plan.
To ensure that advanced practitioners’ skills are consistently recognised, and better enable those skills to be deployed across healthcare settings we must now ensure that the NHS workforce accurately reflects the breadth of the modern clinical workforce.
This will enable accuracy for workforce planning (NHSE one year and multi-year planning) and the multi professional education and training investment plan (METIP).
This guidance is intended to clarify the correct coding of advanced and trainee advanced practitioner roles and will be useful for Advanced Practice Leads, HR Directors, workforce analytical teams, professional and service leads and anyone with responsibility for ensuring
accuracy of NHS workforce data.
This guide does not replace the existing ESR guidance published by NHS Digital, which can be found here National Workforce Data set guidance document

For further information contact your regional faculties.

What is Advanced Practice?

  • Advanced practice is a level of practice, someone who works at this level is referred to as an Advanced Practitioner (AP) or Advanced (their Profession) practitioner e.g. Advanced Paramedic Practitioner
  • The definition of advanced clinical practice which was developed and agreed by all stakeholders is outlined below:

Advanced practice is delivered by experienced, registered health and care practitioners.
It is a level of practice characterised by a high degree of autonomy and complex decision making.
This is underpinned by a master’s level award or equivalent that encompasses the four pillars of
clinical practice, leadership and management, education, and research, with demonstration of
core capabilities and area specific clinical competence.
Advanced clinical practice embodies the ability to manage clinical care in partnership with
individuals, families, and carers. It includes the analysis and synthesis of complex problems
across a range of settings, enabling innovative solutions to enhance people’s experience and
improve outcomes.

Multi-professional framework for advanced practice in England (2017)
  • This definition therefore requires that health and care professionals working at the level of advanced practice to exercise a high degree of autonomy and decision making in a context of complexity, uncertainty and varying levels of risk, holding accountability for decisions made.
  • Please see the multi-professional Advanced Practice framework (2017), for further detail. Further work is ongoing to support the identification of these roles.

ESR Coding changes for Advanced Practice

Following the publication of an Information Standards Notification – v3.3 in February 2022 there have been amendments to the national workforce dataset.
This includes a significant change to the job role coding for advanced practitioner within ESR. There will be more specific job roles than the current generic advanced practitioner for Nursing & Midwifery and Allied Health Professional staffing group.
All of the following fields on ESR must be completed correctly. For detail refer to https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/areas-of-interest/workforce/nhs-occupation-codes

Staff Group: (Staff Group is a defined grouping of related job roles)

E.g. Additional Professional Scientific and Technical, Allied Health Professions, Nursing and Midwifery,

Job Role: (“Job Role is a generic description of the role associated with a position”.)

For those working at an advanced practice level that is mapped to the Multi-professional framework for advanced clinical practice in England, use [Profession] Advanced Practitioner (as in table below)

For those in training, use the Trainee Advanced Practitioner from the relevant staff group

Occupation code

Choose either A, N, S or U. This records the professional group of the advanced practitioner. Each category has a selection of designated occupational codes to choose from that provide additional detail of the profession.

Area of Work

Where possible choose the Area of Work code that reflects the specialism the practitioner works in, rather than your profession. i.e. Choose ‘General Acute’ not ‘Physiotherapy’

Position Title

This is a free text field in ESR that is used to describe job title. Staff who do not meet the advanced practice framework criteria, may still have ‘advanced’ in their job title, but should not have the ESR job role ‘Advanced practitioner’.

The table below details the list of new Advanced Practice job roles aligned to the relevant staff group.

Staff Group


Job Role


Registered Nursing &     Midwifery     

Registered Nursing

Nurse Advanced Practitioner

Registered Midwives

Midwife Advanced Practitioner


Trainee Advanced Practitioner 

Allied Health


Art, Music & Drama Therapists

Art Therapist Advanced Practitioner

Music Therapist Advanced Practitioner

Drama Therapist Advanced Practitioner


Chiropodist/Podiatrist Advanced Practitioner


Dietitian Advanced Practitioner

Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapist Advanced Practitioner

Operating Department 

Operating Department Advanced Practitioner


Orthoptist Advanced Practitioner


Orthotist Advanced Practitioner


Osteopath Advanced Practitioner


Paramedic Advanced Practitioner


Physiotherapist Advanced Practitioner

Radiography (Diagnostic)

Radiography – Diagnostic Advanced Practitioner

Radiotherapy (Therapeutic)

Radiography – Therapeutic Advanced Practitioner

Prosthetics and Orthotics

Prosthetist Advanced Practitioner

Speech and Language Therapy

Speech & Language Therapist Advanced Practitioner


Multi-Therapist Advanced Practitioner


Trainee Advanced Practitioner 

Add Professional,

Scientific & Technical 

Add Professional,

Scientific & Technical 

Advanced Practitioner

Trainee Advanced Practitioner

Healthcare Scientists

Healthcare Scientists

Healthcare Scientist Advanced Practitioner

Trainee Advanced Practitioner

Future National Workforce Data Set – re – coding

All eligible professions under the Additional Professional, Scientific & Technical and Healthcare Scientists staff group will be coded within the generic job roles. However, coding for specific professions is likely to be introduced in the future including pharmacist and social workers.