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Health Professions Council seek views on statutory regulation of psychotherapists



Home » Health Professions Council seek views on statutory regulation of psychotherapists

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It has been brought to our notice that the Health Professions Council has launched a call for for ideas on the statutory regulation of psychotherapists and counsellor, nd is seeking the views of  stakeholders on the potential statutory regulation of psychotherapists and counsellors 

In a press release (issued in July) they stated that:-  

In February 2007, the government published a White Paper on the future of regulation, ‘Trust, Assurance and Safety – The Regulation of Health Professionals in the 21st Century’. Subject to legislative approval, The White Paper recommended that psychotherapists and counsellors would be regulated by the HPC, and that this group would be a priority for future regulation.

 In anticipation of the legislative approval, the HPC are undertaking a ‘call for ideas’ and believe it is an appropriate time to undertake work to explore possible arrangements for how psychotherapists and counsellors might be regulated.

The call for ideas provides stakeholders with a chance to put forward their ideas on regulation, ranging from how the Register should be structured for psychotherapists and counsellors, which titles should be protected and the potential size of the occupational field. Also the threshold level of qualification for entry to the Register as well as others areas.

 The HPC will establish a Professional Liaison Group (PLG), which is a working group made up of external stakeholders with professional expertise set up to provide advice to the Council. The PLG will make recommendations to the Council, on issues relevant to the statutory regulation of Psychotherapists and Counsellors. The work of the PLG will inform the recommendations of the Council to the Secretary of State. 

“The HPC welcomes the opportunity to regulate Psychotherapists and Counsellors. We want to understand the views of the many stakeholders involved and gather information about the field. We welcome the opportunity to learn from and build upon work which has already been undertaken in this area. The outcome of the ‘call for ideas’ will inform the work of the PLG. I would therefore encourage stakeholders to have their say by participating in this stage of the work”

The PLG will make recommendations to the HPC Council about the structure of the Register, protected titles, voluntary register transfer and grandparenting arrangements, standards of education and training; and standards of proficiency. 


1. The deadline for responses to the ‘calls for ideas’ is 24 October 2008. For futher information see the HPC website 


2. The Department of Health launched the ‘White Paper, Trust, Assurance and Safety – The Regulation of Health Professionals in the 21st century’ in February 2007. For more information please see the Department of Health website www.dh.gov.uk


3. It should be noted that although the white paper has indicated that applied psychotherapists and counsellors should be regulated by HPC, the necessary legislation to allow this to happen has yet to be passed.