How social workers fared in first HCPC audits

Report shows more than three-quarters of practitioners audited in September 2014 had their CPD profiles accepted

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More than three-quarters of social workers whose CPD profiles were selected for the first round of HCPC audits passed the process, the regulator has revealed.

Of more than 2,000 social workers randomly selected for CPD audits in September 2014, 78.6% had their profiles accepted. Ten per cent deferred their re-registration, most commonly citing health reasons or maternity leave, 4.6% opted not to renew, 0.5% had their profiles subjected to further assessment and 0.3% – six practitioners – were removed from the register.

Of those who were removed from the register as a result of the audit, five failed to submit a complete CPD profile and one failed to submit further information requested by assessors despite several requests, the HCPC said. None appealed the decisions.

The HCPC, which regulates social work alongside 15 other professions, carries out audits of 2.5% of registrants from each profession every two years as part of re-registration. The September 2014 audit was the first to include social workers and the results were published this month in the regulator’s CPD audit report for 2013-15.

A second round of social worker re-registration is currently open and a random sample of professionals will be audited.

The average age of social workers selected for audit who did not renew their registration was 53 years. The average age of social workers who did not renew their registration in the profession as a whole was 52 years.

The HCPC said its initial analysis showed that there were “no significant differences” between audit outcomes in different professions.

The report said: “Approximately 75–85 per cent of CPD profiles submitted for audit were accepted…The quality of the CPD profiles we have seen so far is high and continues to improve with each round of audits. The majority of profiles continue to demonstrate links between ongoing learning and benefits to practice and service users.”

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5 Responses to How social workers fared in first HCPC audits

  1. A Man Called Horse September 27, 2016 at 5:34 pm #

    HCPC Audit strikes fear into many older Social Workers. One has to ask the question how fair is that HCPC gets to remove people from their jobs when their employers are perfectly happy with them. It would seem that Older Social Workers with many years service are being targeted for removal from their jobs. It is unfair at a time when Social Workers are under huge stress with cuts to services and increased case loads are being forced out. Local Authority restructures have undermined training and given SW less time to fit in training. Also expecting SW over 50 years old to compete with young social workers is grossly unfair. The HCPC shows no concern about the stress SW are under and routinely removes SW from working when they are unable to manage their increased case loads. I for one feel that the HCPC being sacked by the Tories as the regulator is a good thing. SW now live in fear of the HCPC which is what the Tories want. Sick of the Tories and sick of the HCPC

    • ivan September 28, 2016 at 10:06 am #

      I only have a brief statement to this answer….Age equality? You can’t have “al a carte” equality.

      All social workers have to comply and abide by the rules. Social work is a recognised and regulated profession; exactly what “older social workers” wanted and fought hard for!

      Why is it such an issue to continue learning and applying learning to practice? It’s a good thing. It certainly sorts out those who are not fit for the job. Times have changed.

  2. An older social worker September 28, 2016 at 8:37 am #

    The re-registration process, I think, striks a small amount of fear in us all. But I can’t agree that we shouldn’t need to show that we are keeping our skills and knowledge up to date and continuing to develop them. It is essential that we all do so, long service is hugely valuable but not a justification on its own for being competent.

  3. carl September 28, 2016 at 4:40 pm #

    Even though i have been selected to submit a portfolio this time round, I am confident that my practice is of a high standard, I get all sorts of problems presented each day no two days the same, yes i sometimes worry have I made the correct judgment. Having good management to support and listen helps. So therefore a little portfolio is just in a normal working day. As for people being struck off i think its harsh but there must be good reason. As a professional social worker I am proud of the title i spent many years training and have spent many more studying since practicing. So therefore my portfolio will be presented without delay.

  4. Lee Pardy-Mclaughlin September 28, 2016 at 8:43 pm #

    Principal Social Workers in both adults and childrens services should see this as an area of priority to support social workers in HCPC renewal