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HCSW Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct was introduced by the Scottish Government in recognition of the important role healthcare support workers play in patient's experience or care and services in NHSScotland.  It is a national code which applies to all healthcare support workers in NHSScotland.  It is based on the following principles:

  • Protection of the public
  • Safe, effective and patient-centred care/services
  • Alignment with how healthcare professionals are regulated
  • Making sure standards are consistent across NHSScotland

Full details of the definition of 'Healthcare Support Worker' can be found in Chief Executives' Letter (CEL) 23.  Every health board has a strategic lead for the Mandatory Induction Standards and Code of Conduct.  Your Human Resources department should be able to tell you who this and how to access local information. 

The term 'healthcare support worker' covers a very wide range of roles, both clinical and non-clinical. It includes staff who;

  • work in a clinical role (either direct or indirect), under supervision of a health care professional
  • work in a direct service provision role, with access to patients and members of the public
  • deal with personal identifiable patient data
  • have responsibility for maintaining premises or equipment used by patients
  • are involved in the preparation/delivery of goods or services directly for/to service users.

The Code of Conduct does not apply to registered healthcare professionals, unpaid volunteers and staff working under certain specific contractual arrangements.