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Should I be worried about a visit from HSE in my dental practice❓

Should I be worried about a visit from HSE in my dental practice ❓

Well in short the answer should be no....

In general there is a way in which the HSE work and they provide this information here:

Healthcare premises are treated in a slightly different way due to the dedicated inspection body (in England CQC) being responsible for investigating and monitoring standards in the industry. They will therefore only investigate under certain circumstances which are outlined in their page ‘Who regulates health and social care’ which is located here:

So they are only going to investigate if it is outside the remit of the dedicated health inspectorate or they are better placed to investigate under specific circumstances. The common theme and major trigger for investigation is certain types of RIDDOR reported accidents. They could be to staff, patients, visitors or contractors. In fact, HSE are self-funding and therefore likely to target premises where they will receive funding from intervention. Their hourly rate is 💰£129 per hour and they charge for anything from phone conversations to e-mails. If you do get notification of a visit, they will find something. Whereas CQC inspections can be passed with *generic documents* HSE will be a lot stricter, especially if visiting under circumstances outlined above. This is where some specialist advice may be useful. They will also not provide any form of consultation to help, merely state the legislation being breached and may highlight which sections of the regulation specifically. It is then up to you to ensure sufficient evidence has been provided (which may take more than one attempt) to close off the breach (which can be prohibition or improvement notice). This also means that task or area under investigation can be restricted until rectified (unless you appeal – however prohibition remains in effect regardless).

Remember further visits and correspondence will be added to the bill. What is and what is not reportable under RIDOOR to HSE is provided with advice on this page:

Remember a RIDDOR is the likely trigger for a HSE visit, although as resources are limited it does in no way follow that submitting a RIDDOR will result in a visit. So overall it is unlikely you will get a HSE investigation. If you do it is not the end of the world (from significant experiences). Also if an intervention is on your practice record this can also be a positive indicator unless there are systematic failures. The efforts required to resolve these are significant and will give confidence that you are definitely achieving high standards.

So in summary there is low likelihood that HSE will visit the premises. If a RIDDOR is submitted then there is a chance you could get visited but no certainty. If you are investigated you will most likely have some work to do (and fees to pay). However once resolved, there is kudos and experience to be gained.

Note: previous post vaguely about needle stick injury and RIDDOR:

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