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Carers: Vetting

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 272918, tabled on 3 July 2019

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to ensure that (a) self-employed and (b) other carers that work with (i) elderly and (ii) vulnerable people are DBS checked.

Answered on

12 July 2019

The requirements for Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks for carers working with elderly and vulnerable people differ for those employed by a registered care provider, and those that are self-employed.

- DBS checks are not mandatory for self-employed carers, whether the individual requiring care is eligible for a personal health budget or is self-funding. It is for local authorities to inform individuals who choose to use a self-employed carer that while a DBS check is not mandatory, they may still want to obtain one as part of their overall risk management plan.

- All health and social care providers registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) are responsible for checking the suitability of their staff. The CQC expects providers to undertake checks at the appropriate level for staff and volunteers who are eligible for them. They should consider the eligibility of everyone employed including contracted staff, temporary staff, bank staff, practitioners working under practising privileges, volunteers, students and learners and contractors. The CQC expects providers of the services it regulates to undertake the appropriate level of DBS check required for the care staff it employs. In all settings, the eligibility for checks and the level of that check depends on the roles and responsibilities of the job. The CQC has the power to take enforcement action if providers decide not to take up DBS checks on eligible staff, or if the provider cannot provide sufficient evidence of seeking appropriate assurances that a check has been undertaken.