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Home/STUC Congress/Congress 2024/Live Decisions of Congress 2024/Motion 42

Live Decisions of Congress 2024

Motion 42

Protecting the Public from the Consequences of Role Substitution in Healthcare

“That this Congress believes clear role definition within health and social care reduces risk, improves patient outcomes, and enhances the quality of care while improving worker wellbeing, along with improved work environment and culture.

“Congress believes patients must be protected from potential harm from situations where there is confusion about the roles a team member undertakes or where underqualified staff are coming under pressure to undertake activity for which they are not suitably competent.

“Congress agrees that for patients to receive safe, effective care from motivated and empowered health workers that:

  • when patients access care from any healthcare team it must be clear to them the role each person performs so that their expectations and confidence in the advice or care provided is appropriate. Roles must be clearly defined, and patients should never conclude an individual is qualified in a role, for which they are not;
  • no healthcare workers should be coerced into taking on additional activities/ responsibilities beyond their competence and capability to provide safely. Individuals must be able to decline duties which they are not competent to undertake. Health workers must not be encouraged to perform beyond the bounds of their current competence;
  • workers developing their competence must have the requisite education, training, and support to build skills and knowledge before undertaking new activities. Credentialled, quality checked training must be available to support professional development which relates to activity that may impact patient;
  • where an individual is learning new skills there must be appropriate supervision from a suitably registered health professional, ensuring support and guidance is available whenever needed; and
  • workers taking on additional responsibilities should also receive financial reward that fairly reflects their capability. Junior or less qualified colleagues must not be expected to take responsibility for activities for less money than those currently holding responsibility for those activities.”

Mover: Pharmacists’ Defence Association

Tags: Carried