Anatomy And Physiology Online Courses - Safe Guarding Policy

  1. Introduction 

Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses services a wide range of people. Some of these people are likely to be a) vulnerable adults or b) children. The welfare and protection from abuse of vulnerable adults and children is paramount and central to this policy, this includes those in danger of radicalisation. 

Depending upon the nature and requirements of particular Teaching and/or Professional Services, and/or partner agencies, this policy should be read in conjunction with other relevant policies and procedures. 

This policy is freely available on the external Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses website. 

  1. Definition and legislation 

This policy is referenced from The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 (c 47).

Children: In accordance with the Children Acts 1989 and 2004, a child is any person who has not yet reached their 18th birthday. The definition of safeguarding for children referenced in ‘Arrangements to Safeguard Children’ (2002) means that: 

  • ‘Agencies [and organisations] working with children and young people take all reasonable measures to ensure that the risks of harm to the individual’s welfare are minimised; and where there are concerns about children and young people’s welfare, all agencies [and organisations] take all appropriate actions to address those concerns, working to agreed local policies and procedures, working in partnership with other local agencies. 

Legislation and guidance use two terms which are sometimes differentiated: 

  • Children – refers to those under the age of eighteen who are still in full-time education.
  • Young people – refer to those under the age of eighteen who have left full-time education.
    For the purposes of clarity, throughout this policy and related procedures, Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses uses the term ‘child’ for any person who has not yet reached their 18th birthday.

Vulnerable Adults: The legislative provisions that apply directly to the safeguarding of adults are contained in the Mental Capacity Act 2005, and the 2014 Care Act, among others[-.

The Care Act (2014) defines a vulnerable adult as one who:

  • has needs for care and support (whether or not the statutory authority is actually meeting any of those needs);
  • is experiencing, or is at risk of, abuse, radicalisation or neglect;
  • as a result of those needs is unable to protect himself or herself against the abuse, radicalisation or neglect or the risk of it.

Vulnerable adults may be learners, members of team or people that learners come into contact with during their programme of activities.
Other relevant legislation includes the Equality Act 2010 and associated legislation relating to disability and equality as well as the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 which details the Prevent Duty of Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses.

A full list of legislation that applies to children in particular and to vulnerable adults to various extents is listed in the DfES (2006) guidance Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment in Education (1.6–1.8).

Also, the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act of 2015 has duties with regard to the prevention of radicalisation, Asylum and Immigration (Treatment of Claimants, etc.) Act 2004 (deals with human trafficking), The Forced Marriage Act, (Civil Protection) Act 2007, and The Female Genital Mutilation Act, 2003 (largely for children but also can be for adults) 

  1. Scope 

This policy addresses all aspects of child protection and safeguarding within the work of Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses. 

This policy encompasses all those working on Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses behalf working with children or those in vulnerable situations be they as employees, volunteers or learners. It covers those learners who have access to children, for those on an Education course.

This policy provides generic guidance for all members of the Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses community and specific guidance for professional bodies which do not have their own specific policy. 

Where professional body policy exists, or procedures are covered by an external body (such as the FHT), the individual who is concerned should follow the guidance of the specific policy in the first instance. 

Referrals to regulatory bodies should happen in consultation with the Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses Safeguarding Officer, in all cases. 

  1. Approach 

Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses takes a risk management approach to safeguarding children and vulnerable adults, organising learning and teaching, delivery of services to learners and Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses managed activities involving the wider public. 

Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses does not consider it practicable to take steps other than those described above, to vet the backgrounds of learners who, during the course of learning and teaching activities and administrative activities, come into contact with other learners who are children or vulnerable adults. 

Safeguarding arrangements are proportionate and based upon common sense. It is not intended that our team or learners should be restricted from normal ways of working and studying by application of this policy. 

Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses carry out regular risk assessments and make reasonable, proportionate adaptations to their activities to address areas of concern as appropriate. These adaptations are kept under review by the Safeguarding Lead as part of usual business activity. 

  1. Definition of abuse 

Applying to all persons regardless of age.

So we can be mindful of safeguarding, it helps to know what can constitute abuse, as well as those clients who are especially vulnerable. 

Vulnerability can vary according to things such as time and place, which people are present and what activities are being carried out. So this means safeguarding decisions need to be adaptable too. What does not change is the ethos of wellbeing, safety and security that we offer to everyone we work with, through sensible, balanced judgements that support our work.

However, it is important to note that this policy applies the definitions described above in determining ‘vulnerability.’ Therefore not all persons that come to our attention due to concerns over their wellbeing would necessarily meet these criteria. 

  • Abuse is a violation of human and civil rights by another person or persons;
  • It may consist of a single act or repeated acts;
  • It may be planned or unplanned; 
  • It may be the result of deliberate intent, negligence or ignorance;
  • It may happen when an adult at risk is persuaded to enter into a situation that they are unable to consent or have not consented to as a result of a learning or physical disability (not normally to include dyslexia); a physical or mental illness chronic or otherwise (including an addiction to alcohol or drugs); or a reduction in physical or mental capacity;
  • It may vary, from treating someone with disrespect in a way that significantly affects the person’s quality of life, to causing actual physical or mental suffering;
  • Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in significant harm to, or exploitation of, the person subjected to it;
  • Abuse is usually carried out by person/s or institution/s that are in a position of power, trust or authority, and can be perpetrated by a wide range of people including relatives and family members, neighbours, friends, professional staff, care workers, volunteers, or other service users;
  • Abuse can be in person or online.

Abuse can take many forms and includes but is not limited to: 

  • physical abuse – for example hitting, pushing, shaking, over-medicating or otherwise causing physical harm;
  • sexual abuse – for example, unwanted touching, kissing or sexual activity, where the adult at risk cannot or does not give their consent;
  • emotional abuse – including verbal abuse, humiliation, bullying or the use of threats;
  • financial abuse – the illegal, dishonest or improper use of a person’s money, property, bank account or other belongings;
  • neglect or acts of omission – the repeated deprivation of help that an adult at risk needs which, if withdrawn, will cause them to suffer;
  • discriminatory abuse – including racist or sexist abuse, and abuse based on a person’s disability, and other forms of harassment, slurs or similar treatment;
  • honour-based violence, human trafficking and radicalisation;
  • forced marriage;
  • genital mutilation;
  • radicalisation, including the incitement to extreme acts.
  • Applying specifically to Under 18’s

Child Abuse is:

“A form of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting by those known to them or, more rarely, by others(e.g. via the internet). They may be abused by an adult or adults, or another child or children. 

All of the above, information can apply to children, however, for the purposes of clarity, there are four defined types of child abuse.
They are defined in the UK Government guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children 2010 (s1.33 – 1.36) as follows: 

  • Physical abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Neglect

All Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses team members, contractors and volunteers are reminded of the offence of abuse of positions of trust under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 s.16-19, which makes it an offence for a person aged 18 or over intentionally to behave in certain sexual ways in relation to:

  • a child (aged under 18), where the person (aged 18 or over) is in a position of trust (defined as looking after a child (aged under 18) who is receiving education at an educational institution, and a person (aged 18 or over) is not receiving education at that institution).
  • A person “looks after” a child in this context if he/she is regularly involved in caring for, training, supervising or is in sole charge of a child or children.
  • Physical contact with children, except for reasons of health and safety, or where physical contact may be a necessary part of learning (e.g. safe manual handling of patients, for health-related study) should be minimised.

  1. Governance
    The role of the Principal of Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses is: 
  • To determine whether the incident is managed under safeguarding policy and process or by an alternative policy or practise;
  • To apply governance and a structural approach to reporting;
  • To appoint a Safeguarding Officer;
  • To develop and review the institution’s Safeguarding Policy;
  • To ensure that decisions which affect the whole organisation take safeguarding into account;
  • To ensure there are adequate resources available for required safeguarding activities;
  • To ensure all regulatory requirements with regard to specific programmes are complied with;
  • To ensure safeguarding is embedded in curricula and professional registrations as appropriate;
  • To nominate a Safeguarding Lead, in the absence of a nominated Safeguarding Lead this should default to the Principal;
  • To have a procedural process in place, to include but not limited to:
  •  Ensuring response processes to safeguarding issues are followed;
  • Procedures for contacting the Safeguarding Lead;
  • Policy on appropriate and inappropriate physical contact with learners; 
  • Procedures are in place to ensure compliance with the Prevent Duty.

The role of Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses is: 

  • To be responsible for the wellbeing of staff and students, and to ensure appropriate arrangements are in place to ensure compliance with current legislation;
  • To make arrangements for appropriate members to hold overall accountability for safeguarding within the organisation.
    Donna Windwood, Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses 01273 974 954

Appendix 1
Handling a Safeguarding Disclosure or Concern whilst a student of Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses or staff member.

Anyone in a position of responsibility, support or friendship with a vulnerable person or child may be approached with confidential information, a request for help and advice, or have a suspicion raised. If any of these things happen, it’s important that you act upon it. In cases of disclosure, don’t draw on your own opinion but advise that there are proper routes that should be followed. 

You should always deal with any emergency needs first.

The procedure

  • If you suspect, become aware of a situation, have concerns about a vulnerable adult/child, or a vulnerable adult/child discloses information about a safeguarding incident to you, report this to the designated safeguarding lead the same day.
  • Where there is an immediate and substantial threat to life and you have taken action in an emergency situation, follow this up by informing and seeking safeguarding guidance from Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses Safeguarding Officer.

If an incident or disclosure is made to you, please follow this guidance: 

  • Take all complaints, allegations or suspicions seriously.
  • Ensure the immediate safety of the person affected (e.g. is emergency accommodation needed?)
  • Stay calm, and offer support and reassurance to the person making the disclosure.
  • Don’t make any promises of confidentiality as this may conflict with ensuring the safety and welfare of the individual.
  • Make sure that you listen to the person affected and keep questions to a minimum. Establish the basic facts, make careful notes and check that the person affected agrees with these.
  • Explain to the person what you will do.
  • Report the incident, disclosure or suspicion to the designated safeguarding lead.

It’s important to use your common sense in any safeguarding situation – so don’t: 

  • Panic
  • Confront the alleged abuser
  • Ignore the allegation
  • Investigate beyond what is necessary to establish the basic facts
  • Ask leading questions (e.g. where were you at home when you were hit/hurt?)
  • Assume anything or elaborate in your notes
  • Make promises
  • Clean up or tidy the area where an allegation took place
  • Consult with people who aren’t directly involved in the situation
  • Be judgmental or voice your own opinion
  • Be dismissive about the abuse incident, allegation or suspicion.
  1. You may wish to use the safeguarding incident report form to help you record what has happened. If so please give this form to the appropriate safeguarding lead.
  2. This procedure must be followed whenever an allegation of abuse is made, or where you or someone else suspects that a child or vulnerable adult has been abused. Any suspicion, allegation or incident of abuse must be reported to the designated safeguarding lead.
  3. It may also be necessary to report a concern about a colleague to a line manager. Any staff member who considers that they have been subject to inappropriate behaviour or abuse and/or faces allegations of inappropriate behaviour, abuse and/or neglect.

In all cases: 

  • The safety and protection of a child or vulnerable person must be the priority in any decision that is made.
  • Measures must be in place to support the vulnerable adult or child appropriately depending on Faculty and activity
  • It is important to keep an open mind and consider what is known about the child or vulnerable person and his or her circumstances.
  • It is important that any accusation is listened to carefully and reported to the safeguarding lead
  • No action should be taken without first a discussion with a nominated safeguarding lead or their representative.
  • The Safeguarding Officer should be kept informed of formal University representations to local social services, police and adult safeguarding boards.
  • It’s important to remember that the person who first comes across a case of alleged abuse is not responsible for deciding whether abuse has taken place. This is a task for the designated safeguarding leads and professional protection agencies following referral.

Safeguarding Contact

Donna Winwood: 01273 974954

Guidance for handling a Disclosure or Concern 

  • Take all complaints, allegations or suspicions seriously;
  • Ensure the immediate safety of the person affected;
  • Stay calm, and offer support and reassurance to the person making the disclosure;
  • Do not make any promises regarding confidentiality;
  • Listen, keep questions to a minimum, make brief but careful notes and check the person affected agrees with them (where applicable);
  • Explain what you will do.

    Report the incident or the disclosure using the template below:

Safeguarding Incident Recording Template

Your Details: 


Job Role 


Contact Details (Phone and e-mail) 

Details of Incident / disclosure 

Date of initial raising of concern/ incident 

Who raised the concern? 

Contact details 

Who is the vulnerable person / child? 


Age (if applicable in the case of Under 18) 

Contact details Parents contact details 

Where did the incident occur? 

When did the incident occur? Date and time 

What happened? 

Were there witnesses? Name 

Age (if applicable in the case of Under 18s) 

Contact details 

After the incident/ disclosure 

Were there any witnesses to the referral? 

Contact details 

Who have you discussed this incident with? 

Contact details 

Please save this report securely and send it to

  1. Appendix 2 – Roles

Safeguarding Officer 

Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses will appoint a Principal Safeguarding Officer who is responsible for: 

  • Implementing and promoting this Policy;
  • Ensuring that the Policy is kept up to date, monitored and reviewed with changes in Legislation and guidance;
  • Acting as the main point of contact within Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses for safeguarding;
  • Ensuring that the appropriate Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses staff are provided with information, training and advice when and where appropriate;
  • Maintaining confidential records of actions taken in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998;
  • Reviewing safeguarding issues raised and referring to the appropriate authority, when appropriate 
  • If concerns are significant enough to seek advice and guidance from the Safeguarding Officer; Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses default position is to refer to external agencies as appropriate. This includes all allegations of abuse including those under the Prevent Duty.
  • The Safeguarding Officer may seek advice from the MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) Safeguarding Lead

  1. Appendix 3 – Admissions Policy 

Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses is committed to providing an admissions process that ensures fairness, transparency and equal opportunities within the legal framework of the UK. Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses welcomes applications from candidates regardless of their background and aims to eliminate discrimination on the grounds of gender, race, nationality, ethnic or national origin, political beliefs, sexual orientation, religious beliefs or practices, disability, marital status, family circumstances, parental/carer status, spent criminal convictions, age or any other inappropriate ground. 

Successful applicants will be aged over 18 years at the point of first enrolment and should note that they are applying to study in an adult environment. 

  1. Appendix 4 – Related policies 

It is not necessary for you to know all the legislation about safeguarding in detail, but it is important you have an awareness of it. 

Any relevant Anatomy and Physiology Online Courses policy or procedure can be used as appropriate during any safeguarding issue. 

Please click here for our T’s and C’s

The application of this policy will be reviewed annually by the Principal.

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