COVID-19: who can employers obtain fast track DBS checks for?

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The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) fast track checks can be applied for anyone being appointed into a role which is:

  • involved with providing support during the COVID-19 pandemic (including where backfilling for pandemic-related illnesses) AND
  • would normally be eligible for an enhanced with barred list check (i.e. are in a regulated activity as defined by the Safeguarding Vulnerable Group Act) - this includes both healthcare professionals that are registered with a professional regulatory body and other roles which are not regulated, such as hospital porters transporting patients.

The DBS has produced further guidance including a flow chart which outlines who may be eligible for a fast track check, this is available on the website.

Where assurances can be obtained either through a current DBS check (ie obtained within the last three years) or if the individual is subscribed to the DBS Update Service, employers should undertake a risk assessment to ensure this meets the clearances needed for the role they are appointing to. In these circumstances, a new enhanced and fast track check should only be required where strictly necessary to safeguard patients, i.e. where the new role changes the level of clearances required or there is information which may trigger the need for a new check. See guidance on the COVID-19: temporary pre-employment check requirements on the NHS Employers website.

Our online DBS eligibility tool and scenario based guidelines will also help in identifying with NHS positions would normally be eligible for an enhanced with barred list check.


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