Clinical Oncology Professional Support and Standards Board

The Clinical Oncology Professional Support and Standards Board (CO PSSB) develops and issues professional guidance and guidelines and issues advice to the membership on all aspects of professional practice post the award of a Certificate of Completion of Training. Together with related activities, it is responsible to the Clinical Oncology Faculty Board for those functions and programmes of work to fulfil and realise the Faculty plan in support of the College Strategy. This extends to all four UK nations.




The CO PSSB is chaired by the Medical Director for Professional Practice (CO). Membership of the Board comprises the RCR President, the Vice-President CO, the Medical Director for Education and Training (CO) and the Chair of the CO Quality Improvement and Audit Committee ex-officio, four elected members, up to four appointed members and up to four co-opted members. 

Appointed members have defined roles including providing leadership and advice on matters of radiotherapy and chemotherapy quality and safety. Co-opted members include a lay representative who provides an independent and objective view on the work and activities of the CO PSSB and a member of the Oncology Registrars' Forum who provides a CO trainee's perspective. 

2021 meeting dates

  • virtual: Thursday 14 October (10am - 12noon)

If you have any queries regarding the CO PSSB please write to the CO Medical Director for Professional Practice, Dr Nicky Thorp, via the Governance and Academic Research Coordinator at The Royal College of Radiologists.


  • Dr N Thorp (Medical Director, Professional Practice, Clinical Oncology)

Ex Officio

  • Dr R Cooper (Medical Director, Education and Training, CO)
  • Dr J Dickson (President)
  • Dr H Tharmalingam (Vice-President, Clinical Oncology)
  • Dr M Williams (Quality Improvement and Audit Lead)

Elected members

  • Dr P Dickinson
  • Dr M Joseph
  • Dr A Macnair
  • Dr M Smith-Howell

Lay members

  • Ms White

Co-opted members

  • Dr A Kuciejewska (SAS doctors adviser)
  • Dr S Silverman (Oncology Registrars' Forum)

Committee member

  • Dr D Abdulwahid (Chemotherapy Quality and Safety Adviser)
  • Dr P Jankowska (Radiotherapy Quality and Safety Adviser)

Terms of Reference

  1. Commission, approve and periodically review professional standards, guidelines, advice and statements for practice.
  2. Oversee and develop arrangements for collecting and analysing data and producing reports on the workforce and other aspects as required.
  3. Oversee and review periodically the Advisory Appointments Committee function.
  4. Liaise with and advise the CO Academic Committee as required on the development and delivery of RCR policy on and support for research, where this relates to post-CCT activities.
  5. Approve any publications associated with its work.
  6. Prepare, approve and review arrangements for the RCR continuing professional development scheme and RCR support for appraisal and revalidation.
  7. Develop for consideration by the CO Faculty Board new developments or initiatives as directed by Council, and undertake any other developments, projects or initiatives at the request of the CO Faculty Board.
  8. Ensure there is full and appropriate engagement of the Faculty more widely and other RCR bodies and external groups in respect of the above functions that views expressed are fully taken into account in making decisions.
  9. Where a matter has implications for the other Faculty, ensure that that Faculty is appropriately consulted or involved and the resultant outcome is co-ordinated and consistent across the Faculties taking account of any directions in this regard issued by Council.
  10. Where proposals or initiatives discussed by the CO PSSB would incur expenditure or future financial commitment by the College which is not within the approved budget, refer the proposal or initiative for financial appraisal and consideration under the out-of-budget expenditure procedure as agreed from time to time by Council.   
  11. Report to the CO Faculty Board at each meeting on its work.

Subsidiary bodies

  1. Establish such subsidiary bodies as are required and that can be resourced to enable the work of the CO PSSB and its plan to be effectively discharged, ensuring that each such body has a clear purpose and terms of reference, that programmes of work are appropriate and agreed and reported on.
  2. Periodically review the purpose and remit of each subsidiary body.


  1. There will be four members elected by means of nomination and election processes that as far as possible parallel those that apply to the election of members to the CO Faculty Board.
  2. An elected member of the CO PSSB shall cease to hold office if he or she fails to attend two consecutive meetings of this Board without providing an explanation which the CO PSSB considers satisfactory
  3. There will be up to four appointed members who will all be Fellows of the Faculty of Clinical Oncology resident in the UK who shall be in active clinical practice at the time of their appointment. These individuals will represent specialist functions and advice, as agreed by the CO PSSB from time to time. CO Faculty Board shall approve the principles of arrangements for advertising, selection and appointment of the appointed members from time to time and the same processes will apply to the Faculty Boards of both Clinical Oncology and Clinical Radiology. Individuals will be appointed by the Vice-President on behalf of the Faculty Board.
  4. Ex-officio members are: the President and all Clinical Oncology Officers together with the Chair of the Heads of Service Committee (if not an Officer) and the Chair of the Clinical Oncology Quality Improvement and Audit Committee.
  5. The Medical Director, Membership and Business has the right to attend meetings of the CO PSSB on giving notice to the Chair but it is not a requirement of office.
  6. There will be up to four co-opted members, including one lay member and one member co-opted from the Oncology Registrars’ Forum.
  7. Elected, appointed and co-opted members will serve for the term of office specified in the role description for these positions.
  8. All members will need to abide by any stated or implied confidentiality that attaches to the work of the CO PSSB during or after any period of membership.
  9. All members will need to comply with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 2018 as regards processing and disclosure of any personal data where it is made available to them as part of the work of the CO PSSB.


  1. The CO PSSB will be chaired by the Medical Director, Professional Practice, Clinical Oncology
  2. The duties of the Chair include –
  • Chairing all meetings
  • Ensuring that the purpose and terms of reference are observed
  • Engaging all members of the CO PSSB in the work being done
  • Ensuring regular reports are made to the CO Faculty Board
  • Ensuring that relevant matters are drawn to the attention of the Vice President, the Faculty Board or Officers as appropriate
  • Acting as media spokesperson for the College in respect of matters within the remit of the CO PSSB at the request of the President.


  1. The CO PSSB will meet not more than three times per year on dates to be agreed unless exceptionally required to transact urgent business.
  2. Meetings may be held by virtual means/remote attendance.
  3. CO PSSB members may be called upon to consider or determine matters electronically between meetings and are expected to contribute to such considerations or decisions as part of their duties as Board members.
  4. CO PSSB members will not speak on or behalf of the College unless authorised to do so.
  5. CO PSSB members will abide by any stated or implied confidentiality that attaches to the work of the Board during or after any period of membership.
  6. CO PSSB members will comply with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 2018 as regards processing (as defined in the Act) of any personal data where it is made available to them as part of their work.
  7. At meetings of the CO PSSB, one-third of the voting members plus one shall form a quorum. For the purposes of forming a quorum and in the event of a formal vote, voting members are those holding elected, appointed and ex-officio positions on the Board.

Last updated: May 2020

The Minutes of meetings held over the last year are available to members and Fellows of the College. If you would like to see the Minutes of earlier meetings please contact the Governance and Academic Research Co-ordinator