Does A Social Prescriber Need a DBS Check?
If you’re not sure what a social prescriber is, it’s a relatively new role in the NHS and private healthcare sector that isn’t a medical position.
For a more detailed description of what a social prescriber is, along with some guidance on DBS checks for social prescribers, then read on.
What is a social prescriber?
A social prescriber is a job role within healthcare that can be found at:
- NHS facilities
- GP surgeries
- Health and wellness centres
The main role of a social prescriber is to arrange non-medical support for people that contact them, if relevant. For instance, somebody that contacts a GP surgery about their excess weight, a social prescriber may put them in contact with a weight loss group or gym.
Appointing a social prescriber helps to provide patients with a more holistic service and take pressure off GPs and nurses. The social prescriber can refer patients directly to a wide range of facilities and services to help improve their health.
Do social prescribers need a DBS check?
As a rule, yes, social prescribers should be eligible for a DBS check as they are in a position of responsibility. Most social prescribers, depending on the work setting, will be required to apply for a Standard DBS Check.
An Enhanced DBS Check is unlikely to be necessary for social prescribers as they are not undertaking a regulated activity. In other words, they are not working directly in an unsupervised capacity with children or vulnerable adults.
The main activity of a social prescriber is “signposting” which is pointing people in the direction of services and organisations that may help them achieve better health.
But, in some cases a social prescriber may need to get an Enhanced DBS Check and barred list check, if the role involves performing a regulated activity.
What is a regulated activity?
A regulated activity is a job task that involves working in direct, frequent contact with children or vulnerable adults. Social prescribers may come into contact with both children and vulnerable adults in the course of their work.
Regulated activities that involve vulnerable adults include:
- Healthcare services
- Personal care
- Physical support and assistance
- Support services for adults due to age, illness, or disability
- Social work
- Assisting with finances
- Transporting adults
- Day-to-day management of any of the above activities
Most social prescribers will require either a Standard DBS Check or an Enhanced DBS Check, depending on the activities they carry out in the role.
Social prescribers need an Enhanced DBS Check if their responsibilities include regulated activities that bring them into frequent, close and direct contact with children or vulnerable adults.
You can now apply for DBS checks online. To find out more about DBS checks or to ask any questions about the information given in this article, get in touch with one of our friendly teams members today.