The main physical requirements for Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) are related to foot patrol duties.

This includes all the following:

  • walking for considerable distances
  • working outdoors in all weathers
  • irregular meal and toilet breaks
  • working alone and undertaking elementary shift work
  • effective use of mobile or radio equipment to communicate with other Kent Police personnel and with the public.  


Exemption from any aspect of foot patrol duties cannot be regarded as 'Reasonable Adaption' under the terms of the Equality Act.

Applicants will have their eyesight tested at the medical assessment stage.

You may be asked to go to an optician to have your eyes tested and the eyesight form filled in.

Failure to pass this test will lead to rejection.

The current eyesight standards are: 
 

  Guide to Optician's Chart
Unaided vision (without spectacles or lenses)
6/36 or better in either eye (2nd line down on Optician's Chart) is required.

Binocular vision (vision with both eyes) worse than 6/6 (7th line on optician's chart) requires correction.
 
Aided vision (wearing lenses or spectacles)
6/12 or better in either eye (5th line down on Optician's Chart) and 6/6 or better using both eyes (binocular vision) is required.
 
Near vision
6/9 with both eyes together (aided)

A 6/60

BC 6/36
 

DEFG 6/24

HIJKLM 6/18
 

NOPQRSTU 6/12

VWXYZABCD 6/9


EFGHIJKLMNO 6/6

PQRSTUVWXYZ 6/5    


Applications from those who have undergone Photorefractive Keratectomy (PRK), LASIK or LASEK surgery will be accepted provided that six weeks have elapsed since surgery, there are no residual side effects and the other eyesight standards are met.

Select a medical category below to view related conditions and their compatibility with the role of PCSO.

Visual activity

  • Corrected distance visual acuity must be 6/18 in either eye and 6/10 or better, binocularly.
  • Corrected near static visual acuity must be 6/9 or better, binocularly. Applicants who do not reach the standard should be invited for a further test after obtaining a stronger prescription.
  • Uncorrected visual acuity must be 6/36 or better.

Colour

  • Colour vision is not required.

Eye Surgery

  • Radial keratotomy is not acceptable.
  • PRK and LASIK are acceptable but must be assessed at least one month after surgery.
  • Implanted contact lenses – assessment required.
  • Corneal grafts are not acceptable.
  • Retinal detachment surgery is acceptable.
  • Cataract surgery is acceptable.

Audiometry

  • Monaural candidates are acceptable.
  • Hearing Standard: Minimum: (<84 dB at 0.5, 1 & 2 kHz, <140 dB at 3, 4 & 6 kHz) is acceptable (aided if required).

Vestibular Function

  • Severe vertigo is not acceptable.

Coronary Heart Disease
  • Candidates with angina or ischaemic heart disease severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable. All candidates with ischaemic heart disease must have a recent cardiologists report.
  • Candidates with a history of uncomplicated MI may be accepted six months after the event but cardiological opinion is required.
  • Candidates who have had a coronary artery bypass graft or angioplasty may be accepted six months after the event but cardiological opinion is required.
Valvular Heart Disease
  • Candidates with valvular heart disease severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable. All candidates with symptomatic valvular heart disease must have a recent cardiologists report.
  • Candidates who have had valvular surgery may be accepted six months after the event but cardiological opinion is required.
Cardiomyopathy
  • Candidates with cardiomyopathy severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable. All candidates with cardiomyopathy must have a recent cardiologists report.
Arrhythmias
  • Cardiological opinion is required for all candidates with known significant arrhythmias. Those with successfully treated arrhythmias are acceptable if the treatment does not impair the ability to conduct foot patrol duties.
Hypertension
  • Successfully treated hypertension is acceptable if the treatment does not impair the ability to conduct foot patrol duties.
  • Blood pressure should be 140/90 or less.
Peripheral Arterial Disease
  • Candidates with intermittent claudication are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with severe Raynaud’s syndrome are not acceptable.

 

Chronic Obstructive Airways Disease

  • Candidates with chronic obstructive airways disease resulting in reduction in exercise tolerance are not acceptable.

Asthma

  • Candidates with well controlled asthma are acceptable.
  • Specialist opinion should be obtained on candidates who have required hospital admission or oral steroid therapy in the last five years.
  • Candidates with severe asthma with frequent attacks resulting in incapacitation or attacks precipitated by exercise, cold or traffic fumes are not acceptable.

Interstitial and Infiltrative Pulmonary Disease

  • Candidates with severe disease resulting in reduction in exercise tolerance are not acceptable.

Tuberculosis

  • Candidates with a history of fully resolved TB are acceptable, provided exercise tolerance is not impaired.

Epilepsy

  • Candidates with poorly controlled epilepsy are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with well-controlled epilepsy may be acceptable if all the requirements for foot patrol duty can be met. If accepted there may be restrictions on working alone. Specialist opinion must be sought.

Inflammatory Neurological Disease

  • Candidates with inflammatory neurological disease severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable. All candidates with inflammatory neurological disease must have a recent neurological report.

Degenerative Neurological Disease

  • Candidates with degenerative neurological disease severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable. All candidates with degenerative neurological disease must have a recent neurological report.

Head Injury or Craniotomy

  • Candidates with a history of severe head injury that impairs the ability to conduct foot patrol duties are not acceptable. Specialist opinion may be required.
  • Candidates with milder head injury from which a full recovery has been made or who have made a full recovery from a craniotomy may be acceptable. Specialist opinion is required.

Diabetes Mellitus

  • Candidates with diabetes mellitus not requiring control by insulin are acceptable.
  • Candidates with well controlled diabetes mellitus requiring management with insulin are acceptable provided that they are capable of undertaking foot patrol duties. If accepted there may be restrictions on working alone. Specialist opinion is required.
  • Candidates with poorly controlled diabetes mellitus requiring management with insulin are not acceptable.

Thyroid Disease

  • Candidates who have been treated successfully or are stable under current treatment are acceptable.

Pituitary Disease

  • Candidates whose disease does not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable. Specialist opinion may be required.

Peptic Ulceration or Dyspepsia
  • Candidates with active peptic ulceration are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with successfully treated peptic ulceration are acceptable six months after the complete resolution of symptoms. Specialist opinion is required.
  • Candidates with non-ulcer dyspepsia are acceptable if symptoms can be adequately controlled by medication.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Candidates with abdominal pain, significant bleeding, frequency or urgency of defecation are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with well controlled disease are acceptable. Specialist opinion is required.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Candidates with well controlled IBS are acceptable.
  • Candidates with severe abdominal pain likely to interfere with normal day-to day functioning or candidates with symptoms necessitating constant. proximity to toilet facilities eg frequency, urgency of defecation or faecal incontinence are not acceptable. Specialist opinion is required.
Malabsorption
  • Candidates whose disease does not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable.
Liver and Biliary Disease
  • Candidates with cirrhosis are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with successfully treated gallstone disease are acceptable six months after the complete resolution of symptoms. Specialist opinion is required.
Hernia
  • Candidates with symptomatic hernia are not acceptable.
  • Colostomy and Ileostomy
  • Candidates who are able to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable.
Pancreatitis
  • Candidates with a history of acute pancreatitis with full recovery are acceptable.
  • Candidates with chronic pancreatitis are not acceptable.

 

Renal Calculi

  • Candidates with recurrent and disabling episodes of renal colic are not acceptable.

Renal Failure

  • Candidates with chronic renal failure, requiring renal dialysis or who have had a renal transplant are not acceptable.

Renal Tract Malformation

  • Candidates whose disease does not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable. Specialist advice is required.

Deformity or Loss of Function of Joint or Limb

  • Candidates whose disease does not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable. Specialist advice may be required.

Major Joint Surgery or Replacement

  • Candidates with major joint prostheses are not acceptable.
  • Candidates who have had joint surgery are acceptable after full recovery provided that the ability to conduct foot patrol duties is not compromised. Specialist advice may be required.

Joint Dislocation

  • Candidates with single episodes of dislocation are acceptable.
  • Candidates with recurrent episodes of dislocation may be acceptable provided that the ability to conduct foot patrol duties is not compromised. Specialist advice may be required.

Hip, Knee and Ankle Disorders

  • Candidates with joint instability are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with arthritis severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with well controlled arthritis are acceptable.

Neck or Back Disorders

  • Candidates with neck or back pain severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with injuries leading to instability are not acceptable.
  • Candidates who have had surgery are acceptable after full recovery provided that the ability to conduct foot patrol duties is not compromised. Specialist advice may be required.

Anaemia

  • Candidates with anaemia severe enough to impair the ability to conduct foot patrols are not acceptable. Specialist advice may be required.

Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell Disease

  • Candidates with thalassaemia major and sickle cell disease are not acceptable.
  • Candidates with thalassaemia minor and sickle cell trait are acceptable.

Clotting Disorders and Anticoagulation Therapy

  • Candidates with clotting disorders or who are on anticoagulation therapy to the extent that they are at risk of major blood loss from impaired haemostasis are not acceptable. Specialist advice is required.

Polycythaemia
Candidates whose disease does not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable. If accepted there may be restrictions on working alone. Specialist advice is required.

Personality Disorders

  • Candidates with documented personality, sociopathic, psychopathic or factitious disorders are not acceptable.
  • Substance Abuse
  • Candidates who are currently indulging in substance abuse are not acceptable.
  • Candidates who have been successfully treated for substance abuse may be acceptable after one year of abstinence. Specialist opinion is required.

Psychoses

  • Candidates who have a history of functional psychosis are not acceptable.
  • Candidates who have a history of toxic psychosis may be acceptable, provided that the cause of the toxicity is not itself unacceptable.

Stress, Anxiety and Depression

  • Candidates who have had relatively mild, self-limiting episodes of anxiety and depression may be acceptable. Force Medical Officer to assess. Caution should be exercised in the case of candidates who have had prolonged periods of sickness absence attributed to stress. Candidates who have had an acute stress reaction may be acceptable but specialist opinion is required.
  • Candidates who are currently requiring medication to control anxiety and depression are not acceptable, but may become so following a documented six month period following withdrawal of medication without relapse.
  • Candidates who have required in-patient treatment for depression are not acceptable.
  • Candidates who have made serious attempts at deliberate self-harm are not acceptable. A single event before the age of 20 may be acceptable if there have been no other indications of mental illness. Specialist opinion is mandatory.
  • Candidates who have bipolar affective disorder are not acceptable.

Eating Disorders

  • Candidates with a current eating disorder are not acceptable.
  • Candidates who have been successfully treated for anorexia nervosa or bulimia may be acceptable after five years without relapse. Specialist opinion is required.

Obsessive / Compulsive and Phobic Disorders

  • Candidates with a current obsessive / compulsive disorder are not acceptable.
  • Candidates who have been successfully treated for obsessive / compulsive disorders may be acceptable after one year without relapse. Specialist opinion is required.
  • Candidates with specific phobias which do not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable.

Eczema / dermatitis

  • Candidates whose disease does not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable. Caution should be exercised in the case of candidates who have hand involvement. Specialist advice may be required.

Psoriasis

  • Candidates whose disease does not impede their ability to undertake foot patrol duties are acceptable. Caution should be exercised in the case of candidates who have hand or joint involvement. Specialist advice is required.

Malignancy

  • Specialist opinion should be obtained in all cases. Candidates who are considered disease-free or in prolonged remission can be accepted, provided their ability to undertake foot patrol duties safely is not impaired. Particular caution is needed for those who have had intracranial tumours or where cerebral metastases are common.

HIV Infection

  • Specialist opinion should be obtained in all cases. To be accepted individuals should have stable disease (whether or not on treatment) and be without significant impairment of immunity to infection or of mental and physical capability. It is mandatory that all must be under at least annual specialist and occupational health review to ensure that their ability to undertake foot patrol duties safely is not impaired. Special precautions under certain operational circumstances may be required.

Viral Hepatitis

  • Candidates who recovered from Hepatitis A, B or E are acceptable.
  • Candidates who have carrier status for Hepatitis B, C or D may be acceptable depending on the risk of transmission of disease. Specialist opinion is mandatory. Special precautions under certain operational circumstances may be required.

BMI

  • Candidates who have a BMI of between 17.5 and 35 are acceptable.
  • Candidates who have a BMI of over 35 are not acceptable unless the body fat percentage is 25% or less for males or 30% or less for females. Candidates need not be immediately rejected, but should be offered advice on diet and exercise and placed on medical hold for a period not exceeding one year in order to reduce their BMI or body fat percentage to an acceptable level.