The quality check system for all UK nurses and midwives has been officially introduced by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).
Branded “the most significant change to regulation in a generation” by the council, it means that nurses will now have to regularly demonstrate that their practice is up to date.
In April 2016, nearly 16,000 nurses and midwives will be the first to revalidate. However, all 685,000 nurses and midwives on the NMC’s register will go through the new process as their registration becomes due for renewal over the course of the next three years.
Jackie Smith, NMC chief executive and registrar, said of the new process: “We believe that revalidation will give the public confidence that the people who care for them are continuously striving to improve their practice.”
For the first time nurses will also have to obtain confirmation that they have met all the requirements before they apply to renew their place on the NMC register every three years.
Janet Davies, Royal College of Nursing chief executive said: “Revalidation was one of the recommendations of Robert Francis to improve patient care. It is vitally important to help nurses stay up-to-date with best practice and the RCN has worked with the NMC to develop this work.
“This is good for patients, and it is also good for nursing staff. This is recognition of the important, highly complex and ever changing nature of the work that nurses do, which is long overdue,” she added.