The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) is a legal regulator of 308,000 health and care professionals belonging to 16 professions in the UK. It was established in 2003 under the National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002 it replaced the Council for Professions Supplementary to Medicine (CPSM). The Council states that its main purpose is to protect the public. This is done by setting and maintaining standards of proficiency and conduct for the professions it regulates. Its main functions include approving education and training programs which health and care professionals must complete before they can register with the HCPC and maintaining as well as publishing a Register of health and care providers who meet preset professional necessities and standards of practice.
The HCPC has over the regulation of social workers in the UK from the General Social Care Council on 1 August 2012. The HPC was renamed the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) to better reflect the increasingly varied range of professions it regulates. The HCPC has also stated that it was being accorded new powers to set up voluntary registers for unregulated professions or related professions that include students seeking to enter a regulated or unregulated profession or related occupation.
The Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) controls professional standards within the market of private hearing aid. Before April 2010, the Hearing Aid Council was the industry’s regulators. The HCPC are responsible for the hearing aid industry as well as 14 other health related industries such as dietitians and chiropodists. The HCPC monitors and develops strategy and policy in these fields.
Hearing aid audiologists are at times referred to as hearing aid dispensers. Fundamentally, they are the same thing. They must stick to strict rules of conduct, procedure and ethics. In addition, they are accountable finally to the HCPC. In order to prescribe and fit hearing aids hearing aid audiologist must be registered with the HCPC.
If you have a complaint regarding a hearing aid dispenser then in the first instance you should contact the hearing aid dispenser concerned to see whether the issue can be resolved. If the issue cannot be resolved or you feel that you are unable to discuss the matter with the hearing aid dispenser, in that case you should contact the HCPC. The website for the HCPC is the best place to check whether your hearing aid dispenser is registered or not. Registration means that a health professional must meet national standards set for professional training, conduct and performance.
All hearing aid audiologists who are working on behalf of the Local Hearing UK network are registered with the HCPC.