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Social Care Workers to be regulated as new statutory register opens

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30 November 2023: Social Care Workers in Ireland will come under new regulation by CORU, Ireland’s multi-profession health and social care regulator, from 30 November. The regulation of Social Care Workers will promote high standards of professional conduct, education, training, and competence amongst those working in the profession, for the purpose of public protection.

Welcoming the opening of the Social Care Workers Register, Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly said: “Today is the culmination of many years of dedicated work by CORU, the Social Care Worker Registration Board and many others. Social Care Workers are extremely important health service workers, providing care and protection to vulnerable members of our society. I have no doubt the regulation of this profession will provide those receiving care, their loved ones, and the general public, with the reassurance that their social care workers are trained and working to the highest of standards. I wish all involved well in the rolling out of the register in the coming period.”

Minister for Mental Health and Older People Mary Butler, said: “Social care workers are committed professionals who provide the highest standards of care to young people, people with special needs, and people in vulnerable or challenging circumstances. The opening of the Social Care Workers Register is a significant milestone for patients and professionals and will provide reassurances to everyone about the quality and consistency of care social care workers provide.”

According to Margaret Hynds O’Flanagan, CEO of CORU and the Registrar of the Social Care Workers Registration Board, “Today is another milestone for Irish healthcare as CORU introduces statutory regulation for Social Care Workers for the first time. Social Care Workers provide a range of vital services across many communities and statutory regulation will enhance the public’s confidence in the profession.”

“The introduction of statutory registration will ensure that all Social Care Workers consistently deliver to the highest standards ensuring quality patient care. This is a positive development for both patients and the professionals themselves, we look forward to working with Ireland’s Social Care Workers to ensure the highest standards of patient care are consistently delivered.” added Ms. Hynds O’Flanagan.

A ’grandparenting’ period will apply from today and during that period those who seek to be to use the title ‘Social care Worker can apply to register; early application is advised. Those seeking to register are advised to start the application process by going to the CORU website (CORU.ie), selecting the appropriate pathway, and initiating an application.

Social Care Workers are the twelfth profession to be registered with CORU, joining professions such as Dietitians, Dispensing Opticians, Medical Scientists, Occupational Therapists, Optometrists, Physical Therapists, Physiotherapist, Podiatrists, Radiographers, Radiation Therapists, Social Workers, Speech, and Language Therapists.

Work is ongoing to prepare for the opening of registration for a further five professions: Psychologists, Counsellors and Psychotherapists, Orthoptists, and Clinical Biochemists,

Support in completing the application process is available from CORU. Visit www.coru.ie  to submit your application online or for more information call 01 2933160.

Message from Mary Butler, Minister for Mental Health and Older People, regarding today’s opening of the Social Care Worker Register: