Healthcare Locum Agency – ThinkLocum

A Guide to locum compliance: a doctor's guide to registration


If you’ve only recently started locuming, you may find the locum compliance and the prospect of registering with an agency or hospital bank quite daunting. Even experienced locums often find having to register every time they make an application for work a very frustrating process.

In order to simplify things for you, we’re bringing you some answers to the most frequently asked questions about compliance.

Compliance – What Is It And Why Is It Important?

If you work in any type of healthcare setting as a locum doctor, whether through an agency or with a hospital bank directly, rules are put in place in order to ensure that you’re safe and eligible to work in every role that you make an application for.

Those rules are in place to protect colleagues and patients alike. An agency can help you achieve compliance at the time of registration and they’ll take responsibility for certifying the necessary checks have been completed.

What Does Compliance Include?

Compliance requires a lot of elements. The responsible body for setting compliance standards i.e. NHS Employers outlines 6 separate checks that all members of staff wanting to be employed in healthcare settings must pass. They include:

  1. Identity – proof of your address and passport
  2. Eligibility to work – visa and nationality
  3. History of employment – reference and CV
  4. Registration with a professional body – GMC status plus any other certificates
  5. Criminal record – a DBS check
  6. Occupational health – blood tests and vaccinations


Am I Able To Wait Until I’ve Got A Job To Pass Compliance?

Unfortunately, no hospital will review your job application until they’re sure you’ve passed compliance. Usually, ab agency can submit your references and CV then send the rest afterward, but you must begin the process of passing compliance before you can have any certainty about working in that role.

Is It Possible To Only Pass Compliance Once?

All agencies are responsible individually for compliance. Unfortunately, there isn’t any system available to share the information between different agencies, or even between agencies and hospitals.

The good news is that once you’ve already been through the compliance process once it is easier the next time around. About 90% of requirements remain the same, so if you save all of your documents in a single location and share the folder with other agencies in the future, you can save lots of time.

What Is The Compliance Process?

The process to becoming compliant and beginning work is as follows:

  • Review the requirements and forms sent to you by the hospital bank or agency.
  • Collect all of the relevant documentation that you require and send it to the compliance contact. If some elements take longer to obtain make sure you stay in connection with the contact to update them on your progress.
  • Once all of the documents are in place you’ll attend an interview.
  • Finally, you’ll pass compliance and you’ll be ready to begin work.
  • Make sure to keep all the documents in a single file so you can have them to hand in next time you need them.
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