The Competency Framework for Trusted Assessors was created in 2005 with the aim of increasing access to minor adaptations and equipment in the community as a part of the government’s work to transform community equipment services into the integrated services we know today (ICES). It was designed to be useful for people who use equipment services, support workers such as healthcare assistants, physiotherapy and OTAs (Occupational Therapy Assistant), social workers, PAs and drivers / fitters and employers. 

The Department of Health funded this year-long project with the purpose of creating a “national training framework that is competency-based, flexible and capable of being delivered in different settings.” 

The framework was written in collaboration with several leading organisations, headed by Maggie Winchcombe and Dr Claire Bellinger. Organisations included:  

  • The Royal College of Occupational Therapists 
  • The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy 
  • The Disabled Living Foundation  
  • The Royal National Institute of Blind People 
  • The Royal National Institute for Deaf People  

With additional contributions from Skills for Care and Skills for Health.  

The Framework hoped to ensure “national credibility, recognition and commitment of key organisations to support delivery.” 

In practice the Framework has been able to be used as the basis to understand whether a Trusted Assessor has the skills and knowledge required to provide an effective service user-led approach to equipment. 

Highlights of the Framework include: 

  • P19 Considerations for Service Developments 
  • P22 Making Decisions about using Equipment 
  • P26 Theoretical Model 
  • Person, Task / Activity, Environment & Equipment / Product 
  • Reasoning Skills, Professional Behaviour & Supply Process 
  • P37 – 43 Required Outcomes & Trusted Assessor Competencies 

You can download a copy of the Framework here, many of the sections remain useful and valid and it provides a valuable resource when framing Trusted Assessor transformation programmes.  

During 2024-25, TACT’s Clare Barber will be leading an industry-wide review of the Framework to bring it up to date with current thinking and practice. If you would like to be involved, please contact Clare on  

Download a free copy of the competency framework: