Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Moves to regulate assistants mooted in Parliament

  • 4 Comments

Hope is growing that the Health Bill can be amended to ensure healthcare assistants are regulated, despite government resistance to such a move.

Campaigning bodies, including the Royal College of Nursing, believe public and parliamentary opinion is moving in favour of HCA regulation, following the outcry over care standards at the Winterbourne View care home in Bristol where BBC Panorama exposed the abuse of patients - much of it apparently perpetrated by unqualified support staff.

The recent government document setting out changes to the Health Bill made no reference to HCA regulation, despite the panel of experts assembled to recommend changes to the bill calling for a review of policy on the issue (news, page 4, 21 June).

However, one peer told Nursing Times that a number of Lords saw the regulation of HCAs as a priority and were likely to table or support amendments to the bill accordingly.

“I’m absolutely committed to assisting in any way that I can to ensure that support workers are regulated in some way,” the peer said.

RCN head of policy development Howard Catton said the college had been lobbying MPs and peers on the long-standing issue of whether HCAs should be regulated and, if so, how to go about it. He said: “There’s been growing recognition over the past few months that the regulation of HCAs is a very serious issue.”

  • 4 Comments

Readers' comments (4)

  • HCA regulation is absolutely needed. It needs to be a separate body, not the NMC that does it, but it is needed.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • these members of staff are looking after vulnerable people it i important that not only are they regulated but they are also given the essential traing to do their jobs.

    at present they can be working in a shop or factory one day and the next caring for acutely unwell patients. It all needs looking at and we need tighter control and guidelines as to who can do the role and what is expected of them.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • re: mike 28-june-2011 3:59
    why not the NMC HCA's have to abide by their policys,terms,etc anyway who would you suggest?
    ANON 28/6/11 4:38
    yes you have got it about right there!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Anonymous | 28-Jun-2011 4:38 pm

    Yes I agree the same goes for an RN who may be struck off the register and begin work as an HCA. If people would actually listen AND hear that the Healthcare Assistants WANT to be registered/regulated for the safety of patients. These members of staff where I am employed are trained to a very high standard, doing more and more clinical and bedside roles of an RN i.e. cannulations, taking bloods, changing enteral feeds, ECG's, catheterisations, manual BP's, evaluations. Only duties they dont do are IV's and drug rounds. Not all are useless skivvies, majority are educated human beings.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.