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Unit 1: Law, Policy and Ethical Practice in Health and Social Care

Unit 1: Law, Policy and Ethical Practice in Health and Social Care

Health and social care practitioners are regulated by, and must adhere to, a range of law and policy when working within the most common settings of health trusts, primary care and other public authority settings. Even those working in voluntary, non-profit and private organisations will require a sound understanding of law and policy in order to practice proficiently, safely, ethically and legally. This unit develops students’ knowledge and appreciation of the need for them to be thoroughly informed about relevant law and policy. Further to this, the unit presents opportunities for students to apply relevant law and policy in practice settings, both actual and realistic, and to consider the place of codes of practice and ethics in their day-to-day work. The Learning Outcomes in this unit build progressively from core underpinning legal principles and perspectives to national and international law on key topics such as rights and equality, and subject-specific law and policy, within health and care practice. Students will investigate the legal and policy framework related to health and care practice in different settings, leading to opportunities to demonstrate their knowledge and skills through targeted assignments. Students will evaluate the relative weight of, for example, statute law, case law, codes of practice and organisational policy, and will develop an understanding of how to access advice and guidance if unclear about a path to follow. Students will consider how legal and ethical frameworks are interpreted and applied to different settings within the community, hospitals and other areas of health and care. Students will apply this learning to explore the relevance of statute, case law, codes of practice and organisational policy to their own and others’ practice. The knowledge and skills developed in this unit will support students in understanding how and when to access advice and guidance on legal issues relating to health, care and support service practice and provision. On completion of this unit, students will have acquired a good working knowledge of the way that legislation supports the development of policy and underpins ethical practice in health and care settings. This will support progression in employment and continuing higher education in areas related to health and social care.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this unit students will be able to:

1 Explore the legal framework within which health and social care practitioners operate

2 Describe key legislation, national and organisational policy of fundamental importance to the health, care or support service practitioner

3 Interpret the law in relation to key ethical and professional Practice Themes in health and social care 4 Apply law and policy in line with regulatory and ethical requirements in a relevant practice setting.



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