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11.04.18

Views sought on proposed nursing associate regulation standards

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has launched a consultation on its proposed approach to the regulation of nursing associates.

As part of its proposals the regulator has outlined the standards of proficiency required for professionals to join the nursing associate part of its register.

Nursing associates will be expected to be an accountable professional, promote health, provide and monitor care, work in teams, improve the safety and quality of care, and contribute to integrated care.

The NMC says that the new role has been created to bridge the gap between healthcare assistants and registered nurses in England.

The existing code, with a new introduction, will apply to nursing associates as well as nurses and midwives, meaning that the same standards of professional behaviour and conduct will apply to everyone on the register.

Jackie Smith, chief executive and registrar of the NMC, who spoke to NHE about the challenges in regulating the new role last year, explained: “This is a hugely exciting step on the road to regulation for this new profession and we want to hear the views of all those with an interest in the role.”

She believes that the proposals will ensure that nursing associates are equipped with the skills they need in order to deliver quality patient care and support registered nurses and other health and care professionals.

Under the plans, nursing associates would be subject to the same revalidation requirements as nurses and midwives when renewing their registration with the NMC, and the same fitness to practice processes in the event that something goes wrong.

The consultation will run until 2 July.

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