Given that working for the NHS often means working with vulnerable people, it is understandable that organisations must carry out thorough background checks. However, those wishing to work in the NHS may need clarification on what background checks are carried out.

Similarly, those who operate a business that acts on behalf of the NHS will want to ensure background checks for nurses are prompt and professional. Although it can be difficult to find the right balance when carrying out NHS Background Checks.

The following is an overview of the different background checks made regarding those working in the NHS and an overview of the options available for those wanting to carry out checks efficiently.


Proof Of Identity

Many will already know that proving they can work in the United Kingdom is a standard part of the application process. The documents used can vary but will need to be Government issued. Companies can also carry out additional checks to ensure the documentation is authentic.


Driving Licence Check

Although a driving licence check won’t always be necessary, it will be for those operating vehicles on behalf of the NHS.

In addition to checking for driving bans, a driving license check also allows businesses to check how many points a person has on their licence. These checks ensure that those in charge of a vehicle are driving safely and have the relevant experience to drive the necessary vehicle.



The qualifications needed for a role in the NHS can vary, but they must be verified when applying for a position. Organisations can also carry out checks to ensure that any certificates presented as part of an application are genuine.


Employment History Check

In addition to verifying qualifications, confirming an applicant’s work history is also essential. Applicants will also need to explain any gaps in their employment history and provide a contact so a reference request can be made.


Reference Check

A reference check will be carried out in most instances, as many roles in the NHS will require the applicant to have experience. However, there can be times when the information listed on a CV isn’t always correct or embellished.

Although there is no legal requirement to carry out a reference check, it does ensure that a better candidate profile can be created. Furthermore, more than one reference should be requested when possible.

Although this is very rare, a reference check will be carried out to ensure that safety is maintained when working with children and vulnerable adults.


Why Are Multiple Checks Important?

Although the main purpose of background checks for those in the NHS is to ensure patients are safeguarded, there are other benefits to carrying them out.

For example, there can be times when people try to apply for positions using false qualifications but genuine contact details. Using multiple checks ensures a thorough background check can be carried out in every instance, giving organisations, hospitals and health centres confidence that patients are attendees are always safeguarded.

In normal circumstances, carrying out multiple checks can burden a business or organisation regarding time and manpower. However, outsourcing the task to a professional external agency ensures that any NHS hiring process is streamlined.