Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS Checks


27 March 2020

Fast-Track DBS Checks 


In response to COVID-19, the DBS has put temporary arrangements in place to provide Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS applications for healthcare and social care workers being recruited in connection with the care and treatment of COVID-19. 

These arrangements provide employers with the option to quickly appoint new recruits into Regulated Activity with adults and children, as long as appropriate measures are put in place to manage the individual until the full DBS check is received.

To obtain these Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS Checks you need to have an account with us.  It is Free and under no obligation.  Create an Account here.

Benefits include:

  • They are charged at the reduced Volunteer rate, click here for Prices.
  • The Barred List checks are Fast-Tracked so you can start staff in their roles quickly
  • They can be used for COVID Vaccinators and related roles which require Enhanced DBS checks.  NHS Guidance on this is available here
  • Other Eligible Roles are here


To get the benefits of a Fast-Track COVID-19 DBS check you need to pre-fix the “Position Applied For” with the word “COVID”.  More detailed instructions are here.


The DBS is expecting to keep these in place throughout Winter.  We’ll advise should we get further notice of any change to this.

When to apply for Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS Checks

The Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS applications are only available for specific roles which are in connection with the provision of care and treatment of coronavirus disease, and which are within the following sectors:

  • NHS Health Services
  • Social Care Services
  • Social Services

Click Here for the full List of Eligible Roles

This is stipulated by The Serious Organised Crime and Policing Act 2005 (Commencement No.16) Order 2020.  Read more.

Note: COVID-19 Testers are not eligible for Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS Checks.  According to The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 (Regulated Activities) (Coronavirus) Order 2020 the role of "Removing saliva or mucus from the mouth or nose of an individual where that is being done for the purpose of testing the presence of coronavirus in that individual! is not regulated activity.  A Standard level DBS check is required for a Covid Tester.   

Please note that roles eligible for Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS  checks are different from those defined as ‘key workers’ for childcare etc.



The Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS applications will be processed at a reduced rate, equivalent to the price you currently pay for a Volunteer DBS application, see our Standard Price List.  


IMPORTANT:  To benefit from this reduced rate you must follow the steps below when creating and submitting an online Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS application:


How to apply for Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS checks?

To benefit from this reduced rate you must follow the steps below when creating and submitting an online Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS application:


1.  The “Position Applied For” field:  *note this is completed by the applicant

The "Position Applied For" MUST be pre-fixed with the words "COVID" for example it should state "COVID CARER"

Note: If the applicant did not  enter "COVID" or "COVID-19", let us know in the “Additional Information” field available to you in Section Y of your Application Manager section.

2.  Completing Section Y - The Type/Level of DBS required:

Section Y MUST be completed as follows:    

  • Application Type: Enhanced
  • Workforce: Child and Adult
  • Are you entitled to know whether the applicant is barred from working with adults: "Yes" **must be Yes for all COVID-19 applications
  • Are you entitled to know whether the applicant is barred from working with children: "Yes**must be Yes for all COVID-19 applications
  • Is Volunteer: “Yes **must be Yes for all COVID-19 applications - if you select “No” you will be charged the full non-volunteer rate
  • DBS Adult First Check Required: “No” **this will be automatically included in the searches

3.  For the DBS check to be processed at the reduced rate you MUST mark it as a Volunteer application in Section Y.   


A Process Flowchart is available to help you here.


Important Note:  If a DBS Application is not completed in line with these instructions, it will NOT be processed as a Fast-track DBS and you will NOT be charged the reduced price; the full fee for a Paid DBS application will be payable. 




What the DBS will do, and how results are returned?

Firstly, the DBS will check the Adults’ and Children’s Barred Lists and will email the result to Mayflower Disclosure Services Ltd.


DBS aims to provide results to Mayflower by the end of the next working day after they have received the DBS application for processing.


Mayflower will email the results to the Application Manager that submitted the application.


These results will state that “no match has been found”, or that you “should await the full completed DBS check before making a recruitment decision”.


If “no match found” you can immediately start the applicant as long as they are supervised.


Explanation of what this means can be found here:  **note the guidance refers to Adult’s only whereas COVID-19 applications will also include a check of the Children’s Barred List.


The DBS will continue processing the full DBS check and the full DBS check result will be issued in due course in the normal manner.  On receipt of the full DBS check result, the applicant can work unsupervised.


When to apply for Emergency COVID-19 Emergency Fast-Track Barred List Checks

This service must only be used where organisations are recruiting staff will be carrying out one of the Eligible Roles that is identified The Serious Organised Crime and Policing Act 2005 (Commencement No.16) Order 2020. 

Click here for the List of Eligible Roles.

This is to ensure COVID-19 Emergency DBS checks can be processed without delay.


All other appointments that are eligible for an Enhanced DBS check including the barred lists, must be processed in the usual way. 


Employers are reminded that they may accept previously issued DBS checks. Any decision to use previously issued checks should be made at a local level as part of a wider risk assessment. Click here for guidance.


Employers should also establish whether potential staff are subscribed to the DBS Update Service which may allow recruitment to take place more quickly.  Click here for guidance.


Using the DBS Adult First Service

Where Fast-Track Emergency COVID-19 DBS applications are submitted using the guidance above there is no need to request a separate DBS Adult First check.  This will be automatically included at no extra charge.


Joining the Update Service

Applicants should not subscribe to the Update Service using a DBS check submitted according to the process described above. Also, these Emergency COVID-19 DBS checks should not be added to an existing DBS Update subscription.


Any Emergency COVID-19 Fast-track DBS checks that are added to an Update Service

subscription will be de-linked and subscriptions cancelled where appropriate. 

If you have any questions, please Contact Us

Stay safe and look out for those around you.

The Team at Mayflower Disclosure Services Ltd

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