The Health and Social Care Professionals Act (HSCPA, 2005) –set in motion statutory registration for 12 Health and Social Care Professional groups overseen by the Health and Social Care Professionals Council (HSCPC). The purpose of statutory registration is ‘to protect the public by promoting high standards of professional conduct and professional education, training and competence among registrants of the designated professions.’ (HSCPA, 2005)
Introduction of registration is a key driver, which will encourage professionals to engage in CPD. The Health
and Social Care Professionals Council at CORU has already acknowledged that CPD is an important part of registration and a professional’s continuing ability to use their professional title.
When renewing registration, a professional will declare that they have undertaken CPD and maintained a record of that CPD.
Under Coru’s legislation, the registration board may make bye-laws relating to the education, training and continuing professional development of The Health
and Social Care Professionals Council at CORU has already acknowledged that
There are a number of other drivers that encourage Healthcare Professionals to engage in CPD. The joint principles of quality and accountability incorporated in the 2001 Health Strategy developed by the Department of Health and Children require health professionals to remain highly competent and motivated to continually improve their knowledge and clinical skills. This strategy also highlights increased professional accountability, increased rights and expectations of clients and tighter professional demands. A number of other documents have in recent years placed CPD high on the agenda. ‘There has been a substantial development in best practice which has placed additional demands on professionals’ (Expert Group, 2000). The Action Plan for People Management (2002) focuses on the need for the organisation to improve the management of people within the health sector. This plan also recognised that training need not be external and costly, but more training should happen within the organisation, including coaching, mentoring and action learning. The Action Plan for People Management (2002) outlines the responsibility of the organisation to develop its workforce and improve the management of people within the health sector. The HSE Transformation Programme (2007- 2010) recognises the need for continuous improvement and the on-going learning of all health professionals. The Education and Development of Health and Social Care Professionals in the Health Service 2009-2014 recommends “facilitating CPD and the development of recording, monitoring and review mechanisms for same. All levels of CPD from on-the-job learning to more formal programmes and post-graduate studies should be recognised and recorded’. This document also states that “CPD should be viewed as a quality issue and consideration should be given to making evidence of CPD a requisite to practice and promotion”.
The importance of professional development is reinforced in the ‘HIQA – Draft National Standards for Safer and Better Healthcare’ document. These standards also include;
Standard 5.2 “The quality and safety of healthcare depends on the people who deliver it. Therefore, the workforce should have, maintain and continuously develop the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours to provide safe and high quality care”
Standard 5.3“The workforce have and maintain the competencies required to deliver high quality and safe care”
Standard 5.4.4 “Service providers inform the relevant professional body where they consider that the performance or conduct of a professional may be below the requirements of the professional body”