The Government's consultation Regulating healthcare professionals, protecting the public has now closed. The deadline to respond was 16 June 2021.
We have now published our full response to the Government's consultation. You can read it here.
In addition to our concerns about proposals to introduce 'accepted outcomes' with no independent oversight, there are two other areas that give us cause for concern:
1. The plan to remove 'health' as a category in the fitness to practise process. We believe that, not only could this lead to registrants with health conditions being labelled as 'incompetent', it could also make it harder for regulators to restrict the practice of registrants who present a risk to prevent harm to patients. The proposals, as they are currently set out in the consultation, also add an additional layer of complication for regulators, employers and the public by introducing a parallel process to deal with health cases. We think this is a recipe for confusion, inconsistency, and poor decision-making.
2. The proposed changes to regulator rule-making. Though we agree that regulatory agility is important (we have seen the need for it during the pandemic), much depends on how this freedom is balanced with accountability to ensure that rules protect the public and don’t lead to unjustifiable inconsistencies in approach.
Find out more about these two areas of concerns and the solutions we have put forward to help address them in our short report Three things to get right for public protection
These reforms are an opportunity to bring some coherence to a fragmented system. Let’s not waste it.