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Health Services: Mentally Incapacitated

Volume 458: debated on Tuesday 13 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health when her Department will extend the protection afforded by the Protection of Vulnerable Adults Scheme to apply to vulnerable users of NHS facilities. (125086)

On the recommendation of the Bichard Inquiry we are introducing a new centralised vetting and barring scheme for people working with children and vulnerable people. This scheme, as set out in the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006, will extend the coverage of the existing barring schemes and draw on wider sources of information to provide a more comprehensive and consistent measure of protection for vulnerable groups across a wide range of settings, including the whole of social care and the national health service.

The new scheme will be proactive, with vetting taking place on an individual's first application to work with children or vulnerable adults and will make it far more difficult for abusers to gain access to some of the most vulnerable groups in society. The new scheme will be phased in from autumn 2008.