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The Law Commission is the statutory independent body created by the Law Commissions Act 1965 to keep the law under review and to recommend reform where it is needed. The aim of the Commission is to ensure that the law is:

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Nicholas Paines QC

Government accepts the Law Commissions’ recommendations for reforming the regulation of health care professionals

The Government has accepted the vast majority of the Law Commissions’ recommendations for reforming the law that relates to the regulation of health care professionals across the UK and the regulation of social workers in England.  We undertook this review jointly with the Scottish and Northern Ireland Law Commissions.

In its response, the Government accepts our recommendations that there should be:

  • a single, overarching objective of public protection placed on each regulator
  • wider powers and greater flexibility for the regulators to investigate and dispose of cases
  • greater consistency in the conduct of fitness to practise panels
  • greater separation between the regulators' investigation and adjudication functions
  • an overarching duty on the regulators to ensure the ongoing fitness to practice of registrants, and
  • greater flexibility in how the regulators oversee medical schools and other forms of education.

Nicholas Paines QC, Law Commissioner for Public Law in England and Wales, said: “The framework for promoting high standards of professional practice and behaviour, and holding health and social care professionals to account needs to be brought up to date and made fit for the future.
“We have recommended that the existing legislation be swept away and replaced with a coherent legal framework, within which each regulator should be driven by the single objective of public protection. We are delighted that the Government agrees with our position, has accepted the thrust of our recommendations and intends to legislate, when parliamentary time allows, to implement these important reforms.”

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