Stop the Health and Care Professions Council fees hike

What’s the issue?

The Health and Care Professions Council has decided to hike its registration fee by an inflation-busting 18%. UNISON wants to stop this unfair charge on health staff.

Health professionals regulated by the HCPC must pay this yearly fee before they are allowed to practice – it’s effectively a tax on health staff. If the proposed fee rise happens, HCPC fees will have risen by 40 per cent since 2014.

UNISON surveyed our members who are registered with the HCPC about the proposals and an overwhelming 99% said they did not agree with the rise.

What’s more, three-quarters of those who replied said the HCPC does not provide value for money with the current fee, let alone the proposed higher fee. It is also completely disproportionate to wage increases in the NHS.

The HCPC currently regulates 15 health and care professions across the UK:

  • arts therapists,
  • biomedical scientists,
  • chiropodists/podiatrists,
  • clinical scientists,
  • dieticians,
  • hearing aid dispensers,
  • occupational therapists,
  • operating department practitioners,
  • orthoptists,
  • paramedics,
  • physiotherapists,
  • practitioner psychologists,
  • prosthetists/orthotists,
  • radiographers,
  • speech and language therapists.

They also regulate social workers in England.

 

What’s UNISON doing?

UNISON is determined to reverse the HCPC’s decision.

UNISON’s campaign so far:

  • UNISON responded to the HCPC consultation and highlighted that 99% of our members who responded to our survey opposed the fee hike.
  • UNISON has undertaken extensive parliamentary work with MPs to ensure pressure is applied to the HCPC to reverse its decision.
  • 47 cross-party MPs and peers signed a letter organised by UNISON to the HCPC. Read the letter urging the HCPC not to impose the increase.
  • UNISON helped launch an Early Day Motion which called on the HCPC to reconsider its fee increase. The EDM has been signed by over 130 MPs from every political party in parliament.
  • Thanks to UNISON’s briefing, Jim Cunningham MP for Coventry South called a Westminster Hall Debate on the HCPC fees increase. UNISON provided briefings, setting out our concerns, to all MPs ahead of the debate.
  • UNISON wrote to all members of the Scottish Parliament with a full briefing. As a result MSP Neil Findlay tabled a motion that mirrored the EDM in Westminster and called the 18% fee hike “excessive and unreasonable” and “an increased tax on practising” and called on the HCPC to reconsider the increase as a matter of urgency.
  • UNISON continues to work with politicians and peers and will continue to put pressure on the HCPC to get the fee increase decision reversed.

We believe that the HCPC will lose the trust of registrants if this fee increase goes ahead despite overwhelming objections from the people that it regulates.