United Kingdom Homecare Association
The professional association for homecare providers

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UKHCA Media Release

UKHCA comment on Unison's homecare training survey - 23/04/2015

The training of homecare workers is fundamental to safe and effective services, particularly with the growing number of people with increasingly complex care needs expected to remain at home, rather than live in institutional settings.

Homecare workers today (and healthcare assistants in hospitals) are often called upon to undertake roles which were previously undertaken by registered nurses.

UKHCA Policy and Campaigns Director Colin Angel said:

"UKHCA has repeatedly drawn attention to the risks posed by a grossly-underfunded care system dominated by local authorities who themselves continue to face severe spending constraints (note 1). Unison’s findings add weight to the argument that care must be adequately funded. We recently urged the next government to “commit to funding increased state investment in training in order to enhance the quality of care, the status of the workforce and attractiveness of social care as a career” (note 2)."

Unison’s findings (note 3) highlight the wide range of support that careworkers may be required to provide during their career. The purpose of induction training in homecare services is to equip staff to work safely in the community, and to be able to identify additional tasks where they require more formal or hands-on training to meet a person’s specific needs.

The Care Certificate that has been introduced in England is certainly a positive step and builds on the previous Common Induction Standards. While the Certificate is not strictly compulsory, it is clear that the statutory regulator (the Care Quality Commission) will assess whether care providers are implementing the Certificate.

Government have chosen not to require the Care Certificate to be independently assessed, partly in recognition of the additional cost to local councils and individuals paying for their care. The importance of an adequately trained and confident workforce is obvious, and should provide additional reflection for local councils funding care, and for the next government.


Notes for Editors

  1. See “The Homecare Deficit” at
  2. See “UKHCA Manifesto 2015” at
  3. UNISON’s homecare training survey report, April 2015:
  4. United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA) is the professional association for more than 2,200 domiciliary care providers in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
  5. UKHCA’s mission, as a member-led professional association, is to promote high quality, sustainable care services so that people can continue to live at home and in their local community. We do this by campaigning, and through leadership and support to social care providers.
  6. UKHCA has a vetting procedure for its members, all of whom agree to abide by the Association’s Code of Practice, which can be found at
  7. UKHCA represents 33% of independent and voluntary sector providers in the UK, and estimates that its member organisations employ over 119,000 homecare workers, who deliver over 2.79 million hours of care per week to around 166,000 service users, valued at £1.62 billion per annum.
  8. Homecare encompasses provision of personal care, to people in their own homes. For many, homecare is the alternative of choice for people who would otherwise need to move into residential accommodation.
  9. The majority of homecare is funded by the state (usually by local council social services departments, Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), or Health and Social Care Trusts in Northern Ireland). However, homecare services are largely delivered by independent and voluntary sector providers working under contracts with the statutory sector.
  10. Regularly updated statistical information about homecare services in all four UK administrations is available from "An Overview of the UK Domiciliary Care Sector" at
  11. A high resolution royalty-free image of Colin Angel, Policy and Campaigns Director, quoted in this release is available from: 
  12. Interviewees from UKHCA for broadcast media are available on request.
  13. For further information please contact:

Colin Angel, Policy and Campaigns Director
United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd
Sutton Business Centre, Restmor Way, Wallington, SM6 7AH

Telephone: 020 8661 8188
Mobile: 07920 788993

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