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Freedom of Information
Health and Care Professions Council publications scheme
The Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) gives a general right of access to recorded information held by public authorities, sets out exemptions from that right and places a number of obligations on public authorities.
FOIA requires us to publish certain information about our activities, enables members of the public to request information from us. The HCPC seeks to operate open and transparent processes and supports the underlying principle of FOIA; that people have a right to know about the activities of public authorities unless there are good reasons for withholding that information.
FOIA requires us to adopt a publication scheme. It also enables the Information Commissioner to approve model publication schemes which public authorities may adopt.
The HCPC has adopted the Information Commissioner’s 2009 Model Publication Scheme (the Scheme). The Scheme sets out a series of high level commitments in relation to making information available, specifies seven classes of information and sets out the circumstances under which we are not required to make information available.
Click here to view the Scheme on the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) website
Definition document for health regulators
In addition to the Scheme, the Information Commissioner has developed a definition document for health regulators. This document provides guidance on the kinds of information that regulators may hold and therefore be expected to make available. It is not a definitive list and, for example, may include information of a kind that is not held by every regulator. The document also sets out the circumstances in which we would not routinely be expected to make information available.
Click here to view the definition document for health regulators on the ICO website.
A Guide to Information available
In operating the Scheme, we are required to provide a 'guide to information' which covers:
- what information we routinely publish;
- how that information can be accessed; and
- whether or not there is a charge for information.
The information that we routinely publish can be found within the relevant sections of the HCPC website, which is our main guide to information. In addition, we maintain a publications list which contains details of the publications and other information that we routinely provide.
Click here to view the HCPC publications list.
How to make a request for information
If you cannot find the information you want on the HCPC website or by using the “guide to information available”, please send your request for information to:
Alternatively, you can write to:-
Health and Care Professions Council
184 Kennington Park Road
London SE11 4BU
You will need to provide a description of the information requested and your name and contact details (e-mail or postal address).
What you can expect from us
Once we receive your e-mail or letter, we will acknowledge receipt and provide you with a reference number which you can then quote in any future correspondence.
We will then respond to your request as soon as possible and, in accordance with FOIA, within twenty working days. As we have an obligation under FOIA to provide advice or assistance to anyone seeking information, we may contact you if we need any clarification to help us deal with your request.
Normally, we will provide information unless we do not hold it, it is exempt from disclosure under FOIA or its disclosure is exempted or prohibited under another enactment.
We seek to make most of our published information available on our website, from where it can be downloaded free of charge. If a paper copy of any document is required, this can be requested by e-mailing email@example.com or calling (0)20 7840 9785. Hard copies of our brochures and similar publications may be requested free of charge by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling (0)20 7840 9806.
We reserve the right to charge for providing information if a large number of documents or multiple copies of the same document have been requested or where the information requested has been archived and cannot easily be retrieved. We will also do so where there is a specific charge for a publication or information.
Any charges will cover, as appropriate, the cost of retrieving archived material, photocopying, printing, packaging and postage. A standard rate charge of 10p per side of A4 paper will be applied to printing and photocopying. We will inform you in advance if a charge applies and any charge must be paid before the requested information is provided.
FOIA exempts us from complying with a request (or linked requests) for information where the cost of doing so would exceed the appropriate limit set by the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004 (the Regulations) and is currently £450.
In estimating whether a request exceeds the appropriate limit we may take account of the costs we reasonably expect to incur in determining whether we hold the information, finding that information or the records containing it, retrieving that information or those records and extracting the requested information. In accordance with the Regulations, the staff time involved in dealing with a request is charged at £25 per person per hour, even if the true cost to us is more.
If we estimate that a request for information exceeds the appropriate limit, where possible we will try to assist you in ‘re-framing’ that request to bring it within that limit.
Before submitting an information request, you may wish to check our Disclosure Log where you will find our responses to previous FOIA information requests.
The Disclosure Log does not contain our response to every request, but only those that may be of wider general interest.
Responses are published unedited, but personal information, such as the name and address of the person who made the request, may have been redacted on data protection or privacy grounds.
Click here for more information about our Disclosure Log.
FOIA does not give people access to information about themselves (personal data), such as registration records. If you want to know about the information that we hold relating to you, you can make a ‘subject access request’ under the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA). The DPA ensures that the personal data we hold is properly managed.
Click here for more information about our DPA policy.
If you are dissatisfied with how we have handled a request under FOIA or the DPA, please contact:
Director of Policy and Standards
Health and Care Professions Council
184 Kennington Park Road
If, having raised the matter with us, you are still concerned about our compliance with FOIA or the DPA, you can contact the ICO at:
Information Commissioner's Office