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The Care Certificate and Your Training Provider

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The Care Certificate and Your Training Provider
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The Care Certificate and Your Training Provider

I received a question this week from a training provider …
What does the Care Certificate mean for the world of training? Is this following the new care act? Will training now need a certain stamp of accreditation? How will it be enforced?”
The Care Certificate came about as a result of the introduction of the Care Act 2014 and came into force on 1st April 2015. It is an ‘expectation’ of the Care Quality Commission that anyone new into care (from 1st April 2015) complete the certificate within their first 12 weeks of employment (longer may be acceptable to CQC in certain circumstances eg for employees working part-time). The Care Certificate is made up of 15 ‘Standards’ with an Introduction to The Care Certificate and workbooks for each Standard being downloadable here or from the Skills for Care website. Is There A ‘Stamp of Accreditation’? There is no formal accreditation. The carer is assessed by anyone with a minimum NVQ Level 2 in Heath & Social Care – who is competent in the Standard they are assessing and who the Care Provider deems to be competent to assess. Most ‘assessment evidence must be collected during real work activity’ ie not assessed in the classroom but actually ‘on the job’ – as was the case with the Skills for Care Common Induction Standards, which the Care Certificate supersedes.  Neither is it permissible to use Skype or other forms of video evidence when assessing performance. On page 4 of Skills for Care’s The Care Certificate Framework Assessor Document, it tells us
Evidence of performance prefixed with words such as ‘demonstrate,’ ‘take steps to,’ ‘use’ or ‘show’ must be undertaken in the workplace during the learners real work activity and observed by the assessor unless the use of simulation is expressly allowed.” Learners can practice and develop their new skills in a classroom/ skills lab or similar setting but where possible the assessment evidence must be collected during real work activity. Simulated evidence can only be used where the evidence could not reasonably be assessed in a real work situation or is unlikely to occur during the induction period for example basic life support.” All performance required to meet the Standards must be assessed and no evidence of prior experience is allowed. The exception to this is Basic Life Support. Depending on the role and the Level of Basic Life Support training the individual is required to have it may be appropriate to recognise prior learning where this can be clearly evidenced and is within the recommended refresher period.”
Once all 15 Standards have been assessed with a positive outcome and the employee deemed competent to perform all elements, the Care Certificate is then downloaded from the Skills for Care website in either PDF or Word format, completed with the student’s details and awarded. Some training providers, in a bid to replace the business the previous Skills for Care Common Induction Standards training, are leading people to believe that an ‘Assessor Award’ is necessary in order for the Assessor to be competent to assess. This is not the case as is made clear on page 3 of The Care Certificate Framework Assessor Document
There is no requirement for assessors of the Care Certificate to hold any assessor qualification; the employer must be confident that the person with this responsibility is competent to assess.”
Refresher Training There is no mandatory ‘refresher’ period ie once completed and certificated, it is not a requirement that the carer undergoes training again in the 15 Standards – however, Care Providers are well advised to keep in mind that, on Inspection and/or should any incidents occur, Commissioners, CQC, Safeguarding and the Care Provider’s insurances company will be looking for evidence that the employee(s) concerned were competent to carry out the task in question. My Advice For Training Providers For the training providers seeking advice on how The Care Certificate impacts on their business… I suggest that, rather than misleading your ‘valued clients’ into believing that they must pay hundreds of £s to train a member of their staff to gain the ‘Assessor Award’,
  1. Build relationships with your clients
  2. Give excellent value on courses that fall outside the Care Certificate
And consider offering support with
  • Standard 12 Basic Life Support 
  • Elements of Standard 13 which require an employee be trained in the safe use of equipment eg Manual Handling and PUWER
… to organisations offering care services remotely eg domiciliary care companies and those providing temporary staff – these are less likely to be in a position to observe the employee operating the equipment. And remember… Britain needs the care system to run successfully – there is a future here for all who have wholesome intentions and hold the well-being of those in need of our services as priority. Play fair and succeed!

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