Christine Elliott, Chair of HCPC, responds to The Future of Healthcare Speech by Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

30 July 2020

“The COVID-19 pandemic, and the response from all of us that it has required, vividly illustrates the importance and value of innovation, pragmatism and decisiveness, not least for HCPC as a multi-profession healthcare regulator. Those principles are just as important for the long-term future as they are now in this crisis. We are therefore pleased to see that the People Plan 2020/21, published today, incorporates these principles, through encouraging measures such as flexible working and the return to practice initiatives we have championed throughout the pandemic.
“We also welcome the Secretary of State’s call for evidence to share the rules and regulations which people across the NHS and social care feel should be amended or removed. In professional regulation, we urgently need a new legislative framework if we are to move beyond pre-pandemic old ways. At HCPC we are committed to light touch, proportionate, risk-based regulation, and we have adopted those principles in recent months. I very much hope the Secretary of State will make this new legislative framework one of the high priorities for his Department.
“We are encouraged by the strong messages in the People Plan about supporting and developing the professions we regulate. We expect all our registrants to take part in continuing professional development and the new measures to enable this in the plan will help registrants and their employers continue to deliver excellent care to service users and patients. The establishment of a £10m fund for clinical placements for nurses, midwives and allied health professionals and the commitment to an additional 5,000 undergraduate places for these same professions will help encourage more people to take up careers in the professions we regulate. And finally, the funding for a further 400 entrants to advanced clinical practice training will further help better meet local healthcare needs and promote the sharing of best practice.”

Notes to editors

The Health and Care Professions Council is an independent regulator set up by the Health and Social Work Professions Order 2001. The HCPC keeps a register for 15 different health and care professions and only registers people who meet the standards it sets for their training, professional skills, behaviour and health. The HCPC will take action against professionals who do not meet these standards or who use a protected title illegally.

The HCPC currently regulates 15 health and care professions. Each of these professions has one or more ‘protected titles’. Anyone who uses one of these titles must register with the HCPC. The full list of protected titles can be found here.

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