Today, the Rehabilitation Workers Professional Network’s (RWPN) register has been accredited by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care, an independent statutory body, accountable to Parliament.
Under the Accredited Registers programme, practitioners on the RWPN register will be able to display the Accredited Registers Quality Mark, a clear sign that they belong to a register which meets the Professional Standards Authority’s robust standards.
The RWPN is the professional body for Vision Rehabilitation Workers and Habilitation Specialists. Its purpose is to:
- Set and maintain professional standards for the workforce to safeguard them and the people they work with
- Promote the value of vision rehabilitation for blind and partially-sighted people
- Support the workforce in the day-to-day execution of their role by providing information, advice, guidance and learning opportunities
Simon Labbett, RWPN Chair said:
"RWPN, on behalf of its registrants, are delighted that our register of Vision Rehabilitation Workers and Habilitation Specialists has been accredited by the Professional Standards Authority. Our profession sits alongside Social Workers, Occupational Therapists and Teachers but our role has, hitherto, rarely been acknowledged despite the specialist skills we bring to multi-disciplinary working.
“Vision Rehabilitation Workers and Habilitation Specialists work with people who are coming to terms with sudden vision loss and blindness as we support them to rebuild their lives; often working with people in crisis and in hazardous situations. We feel the Authority’s accreditation is an acknowledgement that blind, deafblind and partially-sighted people deserve a workforce that is appropriately qualified and accountable to the public and employers."
Alan Clamp, Chief Executive of the Professional Standards Authority said: “We are very pleased to accredit the RWPN register. Bringing these practitioners into a broad framework of assurance is good for patients, service users and the public and is the best way to promote quality. The Accredited Registers programme offers a layer of protection for people receiving health services, and gives Vision Rehabilitation Workers and Habilitation Specialists the opportunity to demonstrate their commitment to good practice.”
Accreditation does not imply that the Authority has assessed the merits of individuals on the register. This remains the responsibility of the RWPN. Accreditation means that the RWPN’s register meets the Professional Standards Authority’s high standards in governance, standard-setting, education and training, management of the register, complaints handling and information.
Accredited Registers encompass a growing range of occupations and organisations and the Professional Standards Authority may accredit more than one register in any particular occupation. Further information about Accredited Registers is available at www.professionalstandards.org.uk/what-we-do/accredited-registers
Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care
Notes to the Editor
- The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care oversees 10 statutory bodies that regulate health and social care professionals in the UK.
- We assess their performance and report to Parliament. We also conduct audits and investigations and can appeal fitness to practise cases to the courts if we consider that sanctions are unduly lenient and it is in the public interest.
- We also set standards for organisations holding registers for health and social care occupations not regulated by law and accredit those that meet them.
- Accredited Registers can encompass a wide range of occupations and organisations and the Professional Standards Authority may accredit more than one register in any particular occupation. Those accredited are entitled to use the Authority’s accreditation mark so that they can be distinguished easily.
- Accredited registration is different from statutory professional registration. It is voluntary, not compulsory. Whilst practitioners can work in unregulated occupations without being on any register, the Authority’s Accreditation Scheme now offers people the option of seeking practitioners on a register that has been vetted and approved.
- We do this to promote the health, safety and well-being of users of health and social care services and the public. We are an independent body, accountable to the UK Parliament.
- Our values are at the heart of who we are and what we do. We are committed to being impartial, fair, accessible and consistent in the application of our values.
- More information about our work and the approach we take is available at www.professionalstandards.org.uk.