Training in haematology

To work as a consultant in haematology, you can begin your career as a medical doctor or as a clinical scientist. Medically-qualified doctors need to complete specialty training in haematology, while clinical scientists will need to complete Higher Specialty Specific Training (HSST) in haematology or transfusion science. 

The medical route

What are the entry requirements?

To enter training to be a consultant haematologist, you’ll need to:

  • qualify as a doctor
  • register with the General Medical Council (GMC)
  • complete the UK Foundation Training Programme or equivalent
  • complete two years Core Medical Training (CMT) or Acute Care Common Stem (ACCS) training
  • gain membership to the Royal College of Physicians.

How long will it take?

After your CMT or ACCS, training to be a haematologist takes five years if you’re training full-time. There might be opportunities to extend your training, by undertaking research or out-of-programme training.

What will my training cover?

In your first year of specialty training in haematology, you will be given an introduction to laboratory aspects of haematology and, alongside this, the presentation and management of haematological disorders. After this, you’ll gain practical experience in blood transfusion, paediatric haematology, general haematology (such as the investigation of anaemia), haematological malignancy and haemostasis and thrombosis.

When on call, you may be asked to respond to a haematological problem in any aspect of the subject – transfusion and coagulation problems are particularly common out-of-hours.

You will be supported at all times by a consultant and responsibility you take will increase as you gain experience.

Find out more about specialty training in haematology via the Joint Royal Colleges of Physicians Training Board.

What exams will I need to take?

To complete your training, you’ll be required to pass the following.

  • FRCPath Part 1 in Haematology – this aims to determine whether you have successfully acquired a core body of knowledge that will underpin your ability to practise in Haematology.
  • FRCPath Part 2 in Haematology – this is designed to test your practical skills and understanding, and show that you can apply your expertise appropriately and safely.

For further information about the format of exams, visit our exams pages.

The science route

To train to be a consultant clinical scientist specialising in haematology, you’ll first need to become a qualified clinical scientist. You can then enter Higher Specialty Specific Training – or HSST – in haematology.