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HCPC issues updated standards of proficiency for social workers

New capabilities around resilience, weighing alternative explanations and safe information governance added to regulator's list

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Social workers in England will be required to “identify and apply strategies to build professional resilience” under a series of updates to the Health and Care Professions Council’s standards of proficiency.

The standards set out what social workers in England should know and be able to do on completion of their training in order to register with the regulator. They were first published in 2012. The latest changes follow a consultation held last year.

Other new standards include an ability to:

  • Manage and weigh up competing or conflicting values of interests to make reasoned professional judgements.
  • Understand the principles of information governance and be aware of the safe and effective use of health and social care information.
  • Understand the concept of leadership and its application to practice.
  • Be able to present reports in formal settings.

A number of minor amendments have also introduced to existing standards, pertaining to social workers’ expected knowledge base and ability to recognise situations requiring immediate action.

“The profession-specific standards for social workers in England were developed through the input of our stakeholders,” said Michael Guthrie, director of policy and standards at the HCPC.

“We are confident that the standards are fit for purpose and reflect safe and effective professional practice.”

Story courtesy of Community Care

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