Registration and Regulation

17th Jul 2019

Regarding the recently published Professional Standards Authority (PSA) report “Right-touch Assurance for Sonographers Based on Risk of Harm Arising from Practice” published on the 2nd July 2019:

As a key stakeholder in the Sonographer Workforce Project, we were extremely disappointed with the conclusions drawn by the PSA in their report. The report did not endorse the registration of Sonographers as a profession at this current time. However, we are encouraged by the PSA’s recognition that statutory regulation should be considered in the future.

As stakeholders, BMUS committed to the development of a competency and career framework for sonographers, in conjunction with HEE. As such we signed up to the briefing note published in October 2018, which stated:

“Regulation of newly-qualified sonographers is a key underpinning principle which would ensure that patient safety is put at the forefront of the proposed changes.

Partners have indicated that if statutory regulation were to be withheld then the risks of training a large cohort of unregistered sonographers, within the proposed framework, would need to be re-examined, and could make this development unfeasible.”

BMUS remains steadfast in our commitment to seeking registration of sonographers and its associated regulation as a fundamental principle. BMUS also remains committed to supporting the proposed career framework. We believe there is sufficient evidence to demonstrate that significant changes to routes of entry into the profession are currently in existence. We remain concerned that the practice of sonography has the potential to result in a significant increase in the number of unregulated sonographers undertaking examinations in the health care environment and wider community.

BMUS continues to regard this matter as one of high priority. Consequently we have written to HEE seeking clarity on the steps that are required, in order to ensure that registration and regulation for the sonography profession can be achieved.

We will endeavour to keep members updated with progress but be assured we are working hard as an organisation to promote sonography and to ensure safe and effective patient care is delivered.

The report can be found here https://www.hee.nhs.uk/our-work/sonography

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