British Psychoanalytic Council (BPC)
- Helen Morgan, Chair of the BPC, has been quoted in an article in the Independent which explores the proliferation of certain types of online therapy. Helen Morgan comments that while online and remote therapy might work for some people, "There's such a pressure now on people to be happy. I'm worried about the rise of quick and easy interventions for what are often very complex problems where people need to become known and understood and be in a room with someone building a relationship." The article can be found at http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/online-therapy-mental-health-help-services-webcam-appointments-increase-messenger-nhs-depression-a7626496.html
Bar Standards Board (BSB)
- On 15 March 2017 the BSB published results of the review into the Public and Licensed Access Schemes. . These schemes allow members of the public and other lay clients to instruct barristers directly without first instructing a solicitor or other intermediary. The review found that the schemes are operating well; however, three areas were identified which the BSB should address to improve and the BSB has agreed to implement all the recommendation made as a result of the review: https://www.barstandardsboard.org.uk/media-centre/press-releases-and-news/schemes-allowing-barristers-to-receive-instructions-without-solicitors-are-working-well,-bsb%E2%80%99s-latest-review-finds/
General Medical Council (GMC)
- The GMC is to ask doctors about the impact of rota gaps on their education and training, as part of this year’s national training surveys. The GMC has added five new questions to the survey which opened on 21 March 2017. The new questions were introduced following last year’s survey result which suggested that doctors in training with heavy workloads were more likely to miss out on teaching sessions, and be asked to cope with clinical problems beyond their competence. Additionally, they were more likely to experience inadequate handovers with colleagues. The survey closes on 3 May 2017. http://www.gmc-uk.org/news/29301.asp
- Charlie Massey, Chief Executive and Registrar of the GMC, gave oral evidence to the Health Select Committee stating:
“EEA doctors make a huge and vital contribution to health services across the UK. We want to continue attracting overseas doctors in future, and ensure we do not create any unnecessary barriers that would stop them coming here. We are clear that the registration of EEA doctors currently on our register will be unaffected by the UK’s departure from the EU. However we recently surveyed over 2,000 EEA doctors practising in the UK and they have told us that their future status here is a real concern. It’s deeply worrying that some are considering leaving the UK in the next few years. If they leave this would have a serious impact on patient care and would place the rest of the UK medical profession under even greater pressure. Brexit strengthens the case for reforming professional regulation, as it provides an opportunity to make progress in two distinct areas: improving the checks we can put in place to ensure all doctors practising in the UK meet the same standards – whether they qualified in the UK, Europe or elsewhere – and improving training for doctors by creating greater flexibility in postgraduate training”.
General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC)
- The Pharmacists’ Defence Association is seeking to challenge the legality of the decision by the GPhC to approve new standards for pharmacy professions via judicial review. The new standards state “The standards need to be met at all times, not only during working hours”. http://www.pharmacyregulation.org/news/gphc-respond-judicial-review-standards
Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC)
- The HCPC will be launching the Health & Care Professions Tribunal Service (HCPTS) on 28 April 2017 following in the footsteps of the GMC to launch an independent adjudication service. The HCPC’s aim in launching the HCPTS is to ensure a high degree of independent decision making by FTP panel members and transparency in the independent appointment of decision-makers. The change will include a new Tribunal Centre, the Tribunal Advisory Committee (TAC) and a HCPTS website.
Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)
- The ICO is offering advice to help local councils comply with the Data Protection Act and to get ready for the new General Data Protection Regulation coming into force in May 2018. On 20 May 2017, the ICO published the results of a survey completed by local councils, along with a blog highlighting available guidance. The new General Data Protection Regulation sets high standards for organisations when it comes to the privacy of personal data. https://ico.org.uk/about-the-ico/news-and-events/news-and-blogs/2017/03/ico-survey-shows-many-councils-have-work-to-do-to-prepare-for-new-data-protection-law/
Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)
- The NMC has formally agreed following a request by the Department of Health (DoH) to be the regulator for the new nursing associate role. More details about the nursing associate role can be access here: https://www.nmc.org.uk/standards/nursing-associates/ . Jackie Smith, NMC Chief Executive and Registrar of the NMC said:
“The Council recognised that there is strong support for the regulation of nursing associates and I have always maintained that the public would expect any role with nursing in the title to be regulated”.