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Supporting you through COVID-19 – an update for our registrants

26 Mar 2020

John Barwick

Chief Executive

Supporting you as the front-line defence against COVID-19 has been our focus for a few weeks now. Here’s a roundup of what we have been doing.

Growing the NHS workforce

Our work to create a temporary COVID-19 Register of former registrants and final year students is well underway.

We have been contacting former registrants, who we will automatically re-register onto a temporary COVID-19 Register so they are available to join you on the front line. The emergency legislation has now been passed giving us the necessary powers to do this.

We will also be registering final year students who are on UK approved programmes and have completed all their clinical practice placements. More information is here.

More information and our approach is set out in this policy statement.

We’ve been working closely with the Government, other UK healthcare regulators, NHS representatives in all four countries, and the Council of Deans of Health to do this effectively, consistently and swiftly.

Able to offer support?

The NHS is co-ordinating the workforce response across the UK and has developed a survey for qualified and experienced health and care professionals who wish to help. The information you provide will be used to ensure that you are matched to where your skills are needed most by local NHS organisations. More information is here.

Processing new applications

Processing new applications for registration remains a priority for us and we continue to strive to achieve our normal processing times. More information is here.

Answering your questions in the COVID-19 hub

We have created the COVID-19 hub on our website to provide you with easy access to all the information you need about how we are regulating during this time, the support we can provide and answers to the questions you are asking us.

Regular updates are also being provided through social media, so please ensure you are following us on Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook for updates on the go.

Adapting how we regulate

We recognise this is an exceptional and uncertain time and to help you focus on your work, we:

  • have cancelled current continuing professional development audits
  • will continue with our planned renewal timelines, but with extra flexibility understanding the pressures you will be under
  • recognise that you may need to depart from established procedures in order to care for patients and people using health and social care services, and will take the context in which you are working into account should we receive any concerns. Our joint statement with the other Chief Executives of statutory regulators confirms the position we have all taken.
  • working with education providers to provide relevant support and advice

See here for further service updates.

Continuing to protect the public

To ensure that we are able to fulfil our statutory duty to protect the public during this time, we will continue to seek interim orders when necessary and we will continue, as far as we can, with our fitness to practise investigations. We will keep this under review. We are postponing final hearings and contacting the parties directly about this.

Future developments

We are all working in a fast moving changing environment. We will endeavour to keep you informed of all developments and provide support.

We are incredibly grateful for all of the work you are doing to care for and protect us.

Thank you.

Page updated on: 26/03/2020