Health and Care Professions Council logo HCPC - Health and Care Professions Council
Park House, 184 Kennington Park Road, London, SE11 4BU
+44 (0)300 500 6184

Raising and escalating concerns in the workplace

The HCPC's main role is protect the health and wellbeing of those who use or need to use our registrants’ services.

As an HCPC registrant, you must also put the interests of your service users first and act to protect them if you consider there may be a risk. It is important that you know how to raise and escalate your concerns appropriately.


In this section we use the term ‘service user’ to refer to patients, clients, and other people who are directly affected by the care, treatment, or advice that you provide – this may also include your colleagues.

Raising concerns about issues in your workplace is different to making a personal complaint about how your employer treats you. You raise a “concern” when you are worried about an issue that affects others and you are acting to protect them. For example, you might be concerned that the policy of your employer might risk patient safety or you may be concerned about the behaviour of a colleague you work with. Employers normally have separate processes for employees to raise issues about their treatment in the workplace.

Our standards require registrants to take all reasonable steps to reduce the risk of harm to service users, so it is important that you know how to raise and escalate your concerns appropriately. While we cannot offer specific advice for every situation, there are a number of standards-based principles to consider if you need to raise a concern.

Although the guidance refers to registrants who are employed, we hope that the principles outlined are still helpful to other registrants who may not be employed, but might need to raise a concern about a professional colleague.