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Report proposes universal qualification for support workers

11 July 2013 - 4:08pm

A major government-commissioned report on training, education and support of healthcare support workers has recommended that a basic and higher level qualification in ‘fundamental care’ should be introduced for all healthcare assistants.

The review, commissioned in the wake of the Francis report into the Mid Staffordshire scandal, recommends that all healthcare support workers must obtain the basic ‘certificate of fundamental care’ to work unsupervised in the health and social care sector.

In evidence submitted to the Cavendish review, the CSP emphasised the importance of developing career opportunities for support workers who would like to become qualified, and it highlighted the lack of funding for innovative pre-registration programmes designed to achieve this.

The Cavendish review echoed this view, finding that the part-time study route for healthcare assistants had been severely reduced, and calling on Health Education England and its local education and training boards to widen participation in recruitment to NHS-funded courses.

The Cavendish report highlights the problem of low pay and poor conditions for support workers in health and social care.

CSP assistant director of practice and development, Sally Gosling, said that as Frontline went to press the CSP was taking account of the Cavendish report.

‘The society will be exploring how the learning and development needs of its associate members can best be progressed through the report’s recommendations and how these are implemented, obviously working closely with associate members in doing this,’ she said.


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