Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

People working in health and adult social care services carrying out regulated activities with vulnerable people are generally required to have the enhanced level of disclosure. The two most common checks are the Enhanced Disclosure (with barred list checks) and the Adult First Check.

The Enhanced Disclosure (with barred list checks) – is a criminal record check against the Police National Computer showing all convictions, cautions and reprimands whether spent or unspent, a further search with the local police force and an additional check against the Child and/or Vulnerable Adults barred list(s). The DBS are very specific as to the job roles (and who they involve working directly with), time scales and places of work that are eligible for this level of check.

The majority of positions within the care sector would be eligible for this level of disclosure and for some it would be mandatory in line with the safeguarding policies of the specific organisation. It is your organisation’s legal responsibility to check that employees carrying out regulated activities, on your regulated site with vulnerable parties are not barred from working in these positions.

The Adult First Check – is a preliminary check against the Adult Barred list that gives information regarding an applicant’s presence on the adult barred list (barred from working with vulnerable adults). If there is no match found on the Adult Barred list, the applicant can be employed under supervision prior to their disclosure being completed and their certificate being issued.

These levels of checks cannot be obtained by individuals, it is your responsibility as a company or an organisation to apply for these disclosures on behalf of your employees and applicants by registering with an umbrella body such as ourselves and appointing an in-company evidence and identity checker for all of your applications. The registered body will then facilitate each application (and adult first check if applicable) via their paper or online processing systems.

For more information about DBS, download the CQC guide on this page or visit the GOV.UK website.

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