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NMC to undergo 'strategic review'

A review into the governance of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) could see the regulator shrink in size.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Public Health, Anne Milton, ordered the 'strategic review' in Parliament yesterday (27 January), following reports its fitness to practice processes remain “below the standards expected”.

The Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE) will undertake the review and is expected to report back by early summer.

“The [CHRE's] report on fitness to practice shows the rate of improvement falls below the standard that the public and registrants have the right to expect,” said Milton.

“That is why I have taken the decision to commission the CHRE to conduct a wide-ranging review and to undertake a consultation on the constitution of the council.”

The review, which will investigate the NMC's organisational structure, resource allocation and operational management, has been welcomed by the regulator.

It claimed it will allow the NMC the opportunity to “achieve clarity and consistency in the delivery of its regulatory functions”.

“We welcome this ministerial announcement of a strategic review and the impartiality that external colleagues will bring in scrutinising what we do, how we do it and in some cases, why we do it,” said Professor Tony Hazell, Chair of the NMC.

“An internal review of our activities has been underway for some time, and has already prompted some important questions about the wide-ranging nature of some of our work streams and the contribution that they make to our core business.”

Question: Do you think a strategic review of the NMC is warranted?