The alumni, comprised of tattoo artists, piercers and one acupuncturist, were presented with their certificate by the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for Wales, Dr Frank Atherton.

Dr Frank Atherton, CMO of Wales said “I was pleased to present the first certificates for the RSPH Level 2 Award in Infection Prevention and Control for Special Procedures Practitioners to 14 Welsh Practitioners in December 2019.

This qualification has formed part of the process to prepare businesses, practitioners of Special Procedures and also local authorities in Wales for the introduction of a mandatory special procedures licensing scheme in Wales. The preparatory work has been undertaken in anticipation of the mandatory licensing scheme coming into force when Part 4 of the Public Health (Wales) Act 2017 is commenced.“

The qualification received a seal of approval from Public Health Wales, who wanted to ensure the safety and wellbeing of people undergoing procedures that involve needles. The talented student's skills are incredibly varied and included designing whole sleeve tattoos, piercing ears and helping to alleviate physical pains. The course and subsequent qualification were developed to give people working in creative professions like tattooing the confidence that they’re following best practise and working safely.

The centre at which the students undertook the course, Torfaen Adult Community Learning, worked closely with RSPH to develop and teach the course.

Angela Price, Torfaen Adult Community Learning said “Torfaen Adult Community Learning are delighted to be the first training provider in the UK registered to deliver the Special Procedures Practitioners Award Level 2 course. The introduction of the innovative new qualification will provide practitioners with a broader knowledge in preventing bacterial infections and hygiene issues.

We will be working closely with local businesses, and the Councils' Environmental Health Officers, to ensure they have access to the new qualification in their local communities so that they are compliant with the Public Health Bill in 2020.”

The course has proved to be extremely popular and has already been fully booked for the next trial in February. If you are interested in delivering this qualification, some spaces are still available for trainers on the 5 February training day.