‘Safeguarding children and young people’ and ‘safeguarding vulnerable adults’ are to be included as recommended continuing professional development (CPD) topics.
The General Dental Council (GDC) has stated its aim is to increase awareness about these topics so that dental professionals feel confident and equipped to raise any concerns about abuse or neglect of vulnerable people.
The GDC’s Standards for the Dental Team states:
- 8.5.1 you must raise any concerns you may have about the possible abuse or neglect of children or vulnerable adults. You must know who to contact for further advice and how to refer concerns to an appropriate authority such as your local social services department
- 8.5.2 you must find out about local procedures for the protection of children and vulnerable adults. You must follow these procedures if you suspect that a child or vulnerable adult might be at risk because of abuse or neglect.
The GDC has listed several ‘highly recommended’ topics as part of verifiable CPD.
These are: medical emergencies, disinfection and decontamination and radiography and radiation protection (or materials and equipment for dental technicians).
It also lists the ‘recommended topics’ of legal and ethical issues, complaints handling, and oral cancer: improving early detection.
Safeguarding children and young people and safeguarding vulnerable adults have now been added to this list.
Recommended topics may be either verifiable or non-verifiable CPD.
CPD is a legal requirement of registration with the GDC and failure to meet the 250 hour requirement for dentists or 150 hour requirement for dental care professionals in a five-year cycle could result in registrants being removed from the register and unable to practise.
Registrants can check their cycle dates on the GDC website.