4.1 In conclusion, it is apparent that there is overwhelming support for the draft standards as expressed in the consultation document. Where these are criticised, this is mainly relating to presentation and minor additions.
4.2 Many issues raised relate to the model of regulation proposed and are out with the scope of this consultation.
4.3 The figures analysed and presented here reflect the high number of positive responses to this consultation. Comments provided are generally positive or suggest ways of strengthening public protection.
4.4 The draft code for employees, employers and the draft induction standards were considered, on the whole, to be well written, clearly laid out, comprehensive and easy to understand for the target audience.
4.5 For the most part, comment regarding the wording, expression and layout of the draft codes and standards was constructive. To summarise contributions, the wording, expression and layout of the draft codes and standards has to be easily accessible and understood, whilst at the same time covering the entire scope of what is being conveyed to the reader, at the same time being neither patronising nor complex to read.
4.6 The definition of 'good character' is for the most part considered to be adequate, although it could be revised to be rendered clearer.
4.7 The induction standards are considered to be so comprehensive that it may be difficult for the HCSW to deal with all at once. As such, the standards may need to be made more concise and accessible.
4.8 The induction standards were frequently praised for their close work with the KSF framework.
4.9 The timescales around which a HCSW is expected to achieve the standards were much debated. The general view was that there are many variables that will affect the rate at which any given individual achieves the standards. As such, time should be allowed for these variables to have an effect. Between three to six months was considered the most realistic timeframe for the standards to be achieved, with six to twelve months running a close second to this opinion.
4.10 Many contributors commented that the draft codes and standards should be applied across all providers of healthcare, and not simply the NHS.
4.11 It was agreed to a large degree that adopting the standards as mandatory would be beneficial to public protection and would ensure that they were enforced.