Our existing Protecting Vulnerable Groups – Guidance for Care Inspectorate Staff and Service Providers advises that providers should seek updates on individual staff PVG Scheme membership every three years.

This is not a requirement of Disclosure Scotland but rather our advice for safe recruitment good practice.

In light of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and the pressures on both Disclosure Scotland and care services, we have decided to retract this advice at this time and will review it once the pandemic is ended.   

Therefore, you no longer need to routinely review PVG Scheme membership every three years.  However, where an existing employee is moving into a new role, you should risk assess this and consider whether there is a specific need to get a PVG update.

Where someone has previously only been a member of the PVG scheme for children and will now be working with vulnerable adults (or the other way round) an application to join the appropriate scheme must still be made.

If you have any questions in relation to this please contact your inspector.


 In February 2011, the Scottish Government introduced a new membership scheme to replace and improve upon the current disclosure arrangements for people who work with vulnerable groups.

The Protecting Vulnerable Groups Scheme (PVG Scheme ) will:

  • Help to ensure that those who have regular contact with children and protected adults through paid and unpaid work do not have a known history of harmful behaviour.
  • Be quicker and easier to use, reducing the need for PVG Scheme members to complete a detailed application form every time a disclosure check is required.
  • Strike a balance between proportionate protection and robust regulation and make it easier for employers to determine who they should check to protect their client group.

The PVG Scheme is managed and delivered by Disclosure Scotland.

The Care Inspectorate, as a scrutiny body, has the following duties:

  1. Ensure that we are satisfied about the fitness of providers and managers of registered services.
  2. Ensure that providers of services implement the PVG scheme appropriately as part of the safe recruitment of the managers and staff of care services
  3. Ensure that we use our power to refer providers and supply information required by DS appropriately.

Read our guidance that sets out how we will achieve these duties and what we expect from providers of care services.

Referrals for consideration to Dislcosure Soctland

For this scheme to work successfully, it is necessary for organisations to pass information to Disclosure Scotland where they consider that an individual may not be suitable to do regulated work so that this can be properly evaluated and appropriate action taken.  Referrals can be made to Disclosure Scotland by employers and regulatory bodies such as the Care Inspectorate. These referrals will then be considered by Disclosure who will assess whether the individual should be barred from regulated work.

Read our guidance to find out more about refererals, consideration for listing, risk assessment and determinations.