Professional Standards Authority
Produced in partnership with Richard Creamer of Gordon's Solicitors
Professional Standards Authority

The following Local Government practice note produced in partnership with Richard Creamer of Gordon's Solicitors provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Professional Standards Authority
  • What is the Professional Standards Authority?
  • The PSA’s approach to regulation
  • The PSA’s legal framework
  • The PSA’s general functions and main objective
  • The PSA’s general power
  • Appointments to the regulators’ councils
  • Power to refer cases to the higher courts
  • Accredited voluntary registers
  • Duty to inform and consult the public
  • More...

What is the Professional Standards Authority?

The Professional Standards Authority (PSA) oversees the work of the UK’s ten regulators of health and social care professionals. The ten regulators are the:

  1. General Chiropractic Council

  2. General Dental Council

  3. General Medical Council

  4. General Optical Council

  5. General Osteopathic Council

  6. General Pharmaceutical Council

  7. Health and Care Professions Council

  8. Nursing and Midwifery Council

  9. Pharmaceutical Society of Northern Ireland

  10. Social Work England

The PSA also sets standards for organisations holding voluntary registers of health and social care occupations, and advises the four UK government health departments and other organisations on issues relating to the regulation of health and social care professionals. The PSA was previously called the Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence. Its name was changed by the Health and Social Care Act 2012 (HSCA 2012).

In October 2017, the Department of Health (DH) issued a consultation paper on the potential merger of some or all of the professional regulatory bodies referred to above. The consultation closed in January 2018, and the responses were published in July 2019—see: LNB News 10/07/2019 81 and LNB News 27/02/2020 14.

As part of the consultation it was asked about the advantages and disadvantages of reducing the number of professional regulatory bodies, of which many responded that they felt fewer regulatory bodies would make it easier for the public, patients, families etc. to navigate the professional regulatory system. The

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