DBS checks for GP surgeries: a quick guide

DBS checks for GP surgeries are essential to help ensure the safeguarding of vulnerable groups.

GP surgeries can make safer recruitment decisions as a result of these checks, and can meet legal compliance measures.

But who needs a DBS check? And which level is appropriate for each staff member? To resolve these queries, we’ve created this quick guide to DBS checks for GP surgeries, with the aim of making the legislation easier to understand.

DBS checks for GP surgeries: who needs a check?

All individuals who are providing healthcare will most likely require an enhanced DBS check.

This is the highest level of DBS check available and will detail both spent and unspent convictions, as well as any cautions, warnings or reprimands an applicant may have received, as long as they aren’t protected. The police will also be given the opportunity to disclose any information they deem relevant about the applicant on the certificate.

This means that roles such as doctors, nurses, and health care assistants will all require enhanced DBS checks, as they’ll be providing healthcare.

As healthcare is classed as a regulated activity, anyone delivering it will also be entitled to a check of the children’s and vulnerable adult’s barred lists. This means their information will be cross-referenced with these lists to confirm whether they are barred from working with either of these vulnerable groups.

In addition, anyone who is overseeing those who provide care will also be entitled to an enhanced DBS check with barred list checks. As they will be responsible for those providing care, they would also be classed as engaging in regulated activity, which would entitle them to a check.

We can see that DBS checks for GP surgeries are crucial to safeguarding due to the nature of work that takes place. But what about other staff who are not providing healthcare?

Employees not providing healthcare

Within GP surgeries there are usually employees who are not engaging in care of any form, for example, reception or admin staff. Individuals such as these would most likely be entitled to a standard DBS check.

This level of check will still detail the same criminal record information as an enhanced check, but there will be no opportunity for the police to disclose other information, or for barred list checks to be requested.

This level is appropriate for these job roles because the individuals in question will not be providing care, but will have the opportunity for face-to-face contact with patients in receipt of care.

However, if these staff members were also acting as chaperones as part of their job role, then GP surgeries should request enhanced DBS checks for them. This is because their role as chaperones will mean they will be acting as a responsible individual for children or vulnerable adults.

It’s absolutely vital that all aspects of an individual’s job role are considered when deciding which level of check is most suitable for them.

DBS checks for GP surgeries: key points

As we have explored, DBS checks for GP surgeries are essential to ensure the safeguarding of vulnerable groups.

When requesting DBS checks for GP surgeries, there are some important points to consider, namely confirming which level of check is required for all staff members.

In addition, we would recommend – as with all organisations – that GP surgeries should check with any regulatory body they may have, such as the Care Quality Commission (CQC), to confirm their criminal record checking policy.

Some regulatory bodies may have requirements in place in terms of accepting checks, and when new disclosures should be requested. These points should be confirmed with regulatory bodies as part of the DBS application process.

Want to start requesting checks? When requesting DBS checks for GP surgeries, uCheck can provide support and guidance to help you through the application process.

To get started, open an account here – it takes less than five minutes.

Any questions? Get in touch – our support team will be happy to help.