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Which DBS check do I need? – Surgeon

To work as a surgeon in the UK, you will need to undergo a statutory DBS check. A DBS check is a formal background check carried out by the Disclosure and Barring Service.

The Disclosure and Barring Service are a public body sponsored by the Home Office. All medical professionals and other frontline workers are required to take DBS checks to ensure the public, particularly children and vulnerable adults, are protected from those who are unsuitable for frontline roles.

A legal requirement for all medical professionals

The 1974 Rehabilitation of Offenders Act makes it a legal requirement for all medical professionals, including surgeons, to undertake a DBS check.

The act sets out the type of CRB check all those working in public-facing roles in the UK must take as part of the recruitment process for the position.

The DBS check for a surgeon is an enhanced DBS check with barred lists. This level of check is the deepest type of DBS check and is in line with the type of statutory background check other medical professionals, such as doctors, must undergo.

Working in a hospital in a position of influence, with constant unsupervised contact with all members of the public in vulnerable states, makes surgeons a high risk category for safeguarding.

Your DBS check for a surgeon will involve a search for any unspent or spent convictions, cautions, reprimands or warnings. The DBS will also verify if there is any further non-conviction information in existence with relevant police forces or entries on the children’s and vulnerable adults barred lists.

This type of check can only be requested by your employer. For further information about DBS checks for surgeons, visit the Royal College of Surgeons.