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NMC launches consultation into nurse revalidation

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has launched the first part of a consultation into nurse revalidation and a review of the code.  

According to the NMC, the consultation will explore how nurses can be revalidated can be applied in different practice and employment settings. 

It will also consider the content and structure of the NMC Code, which is fundamental to good nursing and midwifery practice. 

Revalidation is process by which registered nurses and midwives will demonstrate to the NMC that they remain fit to practise and continue to adhere to the professional standards set out in the Code. Everyone on the NMC's register will need to revalidate every three years at the point of renewal of registration.

Revalidation aims to protect the public and increase public confidence in nurses and midwives. It enables nurses and midwives to demonstrate their commitment to professional development.

Dr. Katerina Kolyva, NMC director of continued practice, said: “This consultation is an opportunity for everyone to have their say about revalidation for nurses and midwives. To get this right we need to hear from a range of people who will be affected by revalidation, which includes anyone cared for by a nurse or midwife.

“The Code is central to revalidation, so we are also taking the opportunity to ask what a revised Code and supporting guidance should look like, feel like and contain.”

The consultation will seek views on:

 - Ways in which nurses and midwives can obtain confirmation of their continuing fitness to practise by someone well placed to comment.

 - Using practice related feedback to improve standards of care.

 - How revalidation can meet the needs of an individual's scope of practice or setting.

 - The look, feel and content of a revised Code.

Dr Peter Carter, Royal College of Nursing chief executive said: “The Francis Inquiry made it clear that a system for revalidating nurses needs to be introduced, and the RCN very much agrees with this. Patients deserve to know that every nurse is fit to practice in a modern setting and competent for the role they are performing.

“What we need to ensure is that nurses are properly supported to make the revalidation system work, whether through on-going post-registration training or through mentorship and supervision, as they are already experiencing very high workloads and seeing their finances hit hard. We need to see adequate funding for training support, as well as employers factoring in time for staff to complete this.”