For Written Answer on : 29/11/2022
Question Number(s): 633 Question Reference(s): 58862/22
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
To ask the Minister for Health if he will outline the situation with respect to the registration and regulation of psychologists; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The Health and Social Care Professionals Council and Registration Boards, collectively known as CORU, are responsible for protecting the public by promoting high standards of professional conduct, education, training, and competence amongst the professions designated under the Health and Social Care Professionals Act (2005).
The Act is being implemented on a phased basis as registration boards and their registers are being established. The members of the Psychologists Registration Board were appointed in July 2017, and they held their inaugural meeting in September 2017.
The work of a registration board includes consideration of the titles to be protected, the minimum qualifications to be required of existing practitioners, and the qualifications that will be required for future graduates. The work of the Psychologists Registration Board (PSRB) is significantly more challenging than it is for registration boards for some of the more established professions, owing to the many different educational pathways into the profession, and the variety of specialities and titles used.
In November 2020, the PSRB opened a public consultation on the education and training standards and all stakeholders were encouraged to participate. The consultation, which received over 700 submissions, revealed a lack of consensus on how to proceed with the regulation of the profession.
Last year CORU wrote to me on behalf of the PSRB seeking guidance on potential regulatory approaches. Having considered the complexity of the issues, I wrote to CORU last August requesting that the PSRB consider a dual stream and phased approach to regulating the psychology profession. This approach would envisage that, as an interim and preliminary measure, the Board could begin to consider the regulation of certain psychology specialisms which present the greatest risk to public safety while simultaneously working towards the regulation of the title of psychologist in the future.