Health regulator widens remit

Ireland’s first multi-profession health regulator now has statutory powers to examine complaints against social workers and other registered practitioners.

CORU can hold fitness to practise inquiries and impose sanctions on a registered practitioner found guilty of poor professional performance or professional misconduct. The regulator can examine complaints against registered practitioners in relation to any event that took place since December 31 2014.

Social workers, radiographers, radiation therapists, dietitians and speech and language therapists are currently subject to the fitness to practise regime.

Over 3,600 social workers are registered with CORU, well in excess of the 2,700 predicted when the register opened in May 2011.

There are 285 radiographers and radiation therapists registered and over 300 applications are awaiting completion. That register opened in October 2013.

Registers for dietitians and speech and language therapists opened at the end of last October.

Occupational therapists, physiotherapists, optometrists and dispensing opticians will become part of the regime later this year.

A complaint can be made by anyone in respect of a health and social care professional registered with CORU, established under the 2005 health and Social Care Professionals Act.

Registers for social workers, radiographers and radiation therapists can be accessed at www.coru. ie.

Sanctions that can be imposed include suspension or cancellation of a registration.

CORU chief executive, Ginny Hanrahan, said protecting the public was their primary remit.


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