Healthcare Professional Alert Notices

What are HPANs?

We are responsible for the management of the Healthcare Professional Alert Notices (HPANs) system. This is a system where notices are issued by us to inform NHS bodies and others about health professionals who may pose a significant risk of harm to patients, staff or the public.

HPANs are usually used whilst the regulator is considering the concerns and provides an additional safeguard during the pre-employment checking process.

Requests to issue a HPAN

NHS organisations and other bodies providing services to the NHS, who wish to request the issue of an HPAN should notify us at nhsr.hpan@nhs.net using the downloadable HPAN request form.

Please note: the request must be made by an Executive Board member or their authorised deputy and must relate to a healthcare professional (or a person holding himself out to be a healthcare professional) who:

  • poses a significant risk of harm to patients, staff or the public;
  • may continue to work or seek additional or other work in the NHS as a healthcare professional;
  • that there is a pressing need to issue an alert notice

How to check if an individual is the subject of a HPAN

Once the HPAN has been authorised, copies will be distributed electronically to the following:

  • NHS England National Medical Director
  • NHS England Regional Medical Director
  • NHS England Area Team Medical Director
  • Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for Northern Ireland
  • Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for Scotland
  • Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for Wales
  • the NHS body which requested it
  • the relevant healthcare regulatory body
  • the subject of the HPAN

It may also be sent to any NHS body, or other organisation which provides services to an NHS body, which we believe may be approached by the subject of the HPAN with a view to working in the NHS.

After an HPAN has been issued, a review form will be completed at regular intervals using the downloadable HPAN review form.

From 5 October 2015, NHS bodies with access to the Health and Social Care Network may apply for access to the Performers List and Healthcare Professional Web Check Service, which allows employers to check whether an individual is subject to an active HPAN. HPAN checks are a requirement of pre-employment checks for the NHS, please see: https://www.nhsemployers.org/publications/professional-registration-and-qualification-checks-standard

If your organisation does not already have access to this web service (for Performers Lists Checks) and you wish to use it, we will require details of one person per organisation who, in addition to completing checks, will act as local administrator with rights to grant system access to colleagues. We require their name, position, organisation, email address and telephone number. Please send these details to nhsr.appeals@nhs.net

Once an account has been created, please ensure that you enable content to run on your device and check that internal security features do not prevent access.

Organisations that do not have a secure nhs.net connection, but must check prospective employees against the list of active HPANs, should consider applying for access to the Health & Social Care Network through NHS Digital: Health and Social Care Network (HSCN) – NHS Digital.

Our service also carries out checks for those organisations without access to the Health & Social Care Network. These organisations should contact the the Practitioner Performance Advice HPAN check request service directly via: nhsr.hpanchecks@nhs.net

We only carry out checks for registered healthcare professionals, and we require individuals’ full name, regulator/profession, and the registration number/PIN. If an organisation is undertaking a large amount of check requests, we request these are listed in a spreadsheet with individuals’ details included as above. Following a manual search of our HPAN database, our team will respond as soon as possible.

Insights

Our Insights publications share analysis and research which draw on our in-depth experience providing expert, impartial advice and interventions to healthcare organisations to effectively manage and resolve concerns raised about the practice of individual healthcare practitioners.

Our HPAN Insight looks at key features from a review of all requests for an HPAN we have received since 2013. In sharing this information we aim to raise awareness of the importance of the HPAN scheme as a safety measure.

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