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Nursing & Midwifery Council

NMC Responds to 'Nursing Associate' Role

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by NursingNotes.
Nursing Associates to be Introduced in 2017

The Nursing and Midwifery Council have made it clear that the new routes into the Nursing profession must have the same "robust approach" as the current degree. 

Commenting on the announcement of the introduction of a new role of nursing associate, NMC Chief Executive and Registrar, Jackie Smith, said (1):


"The introduction of this new role is an important development for the nursing profession and as the regulator for nursing and midwifery we will be carefully considering our role moving forward.

"The starting point for any new role in healthcare has to be its contribution to improving patient safety and quality and as such there will be some important considerations, including whether nursing associates should be regulated.

"It is for the government to determine the policy position in discussion with others, but while we are supportive of widening access into the nursing profession, it will be important that any new routes into the profession have the same robust approach that the existing university degree route provides. As the Minister rightly points out, an apprenticeship in nursing as a route to eventual registered nurse status must 'have complete equality of both esteem and rigour' as a degree.

"We will be responding fully to the consultation and look forward to continuing to work closely with the government and Health Education England on this important issue."

Because the NMC sets the criteria for the registration of new Nurses they are in a fantastic position to help ensure the education undertaken in the alternative routes into nursing is of the same standard of those using the traditional routes.

Currently under consultation the specifics of the role have yet to be outlined but many Nurses have called the new Nursing Associates to hold a registration with either the NMC or Health Professionals Council and have professional accountability for the actions or decisions they make.

You can take part in the consultation by completing this online survey or by downloading a survey response form and emailing it to

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Nursing & Midwifery Council

MP suggests the NHS should not fund life-extending drugs for the elderly

The MP told radio listeners he isn't sure if the “enormous expense” to keep older people alive is justifiable.

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by Chloe Dawson.
MP suggests the NHS should not fund life-extending drugs for the elderly

The Conservative MP questioned if life-extending drugs for the elderly are justifiable.

David Davies, the Conservative MP for Monmouth and Brexiteer, suggested that the NHS should not provide life-extending drugs for elderly patients who are already nearing the end of their lives.

He told radio listeners he isn't sure if the “enormous expense” to keep older people alive is justifiable after a poll revealed that 82 % of voters should support a 1p ring-fenced rise in National Insurance to ensure the NHS is properly funded.


In August 2017, Davies suggested victims of crimes should not be provided with interpreters so that the police could save money and in response to the 2015 refugee crisis Davies claimed that majority of the people attempting to enter the UK were not refugees fleeing war, but were instead migrants "mostly young men, mostly with mobile phones, chancing their luck"

Can we justify the expense?

Mr Davies, told talkRADIO host Julia Hartley-Brewer: “There are drugs out there that will keep people alive for a few months longer, maybe being delivered at the end of what might have been a long and productive life at enormous expense.

“And I think we need an honest debate about the cost of some of these drugs because I’d like to see people in their – young people of course getting access to this – but I’m not sure how justifiable it is.

“And this is difficult to say, when somebody is in their 80s, and they’re at the end of what’s been a long and happy life, to try and keep somebody alive for an extra couple of months at a cost that that could run into hundreds of thousands of pounds is something we need to be talking about.”

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NMC launches new educational standards to 'shape the future of nursing'

Part of the changes includes the removal of the cap on the number of hours students can spend on simulation activities.

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by Ian Snug.
NMC launches new educational standards to 'shape the future of nursing'

Student nurses will start to train against the new standards from January 2019.

Last week the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) launched 'ambitious' new standards of proficiency that set out the skills and knowledge the next generation of nurses need.

Alongside the new proficiencies, the NMC has introduced a more modern and innovative approach to the way universities and their practise partners train nurses and midwives - the NMC claim these changes will allow greater independence of assessment, and greater innovation by placement providers.


The NMC has also removed its standards for medicines management and instead encourages employers to instigate rigorous medicines management procedures.

Unlimited simulation.

Finally, part of the changes includes the removal of the cap on the number of hours students can spend on simulation activities - despite concerns this could reduce the total amount of time student nurses could spend on placements.

The new standards represent two years’ work and have been developed alongside nurses - as well as students, educators, healthcare professionals, charities and patient groups from across the UK.

Jackie Smith, NMC Chief Executive and Registrar, said: “Our new standards represent a huge leap forward. They raise the bar for the next generation of nurses and not only match the demands of the role but the ambition of the profession. This is vital as in the coming years many thousands of new professionals will join our register, delivering care to millions of people.

“We’ve also overhauled the way universities train nurses and midwives. They’ll be given more flexibility to harness new ways of working and embrace technology so they can equip the nurses and midwives of tomorrow with the skills they need to deliver world class care for years to come.”

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PSA says the NMC "inadequate" with "cultural problems"

The Professional Standards Authority has criticised how the NMC handled concerns about midwives’ fitness to practise.

Published on

by Sarah J.
Former newspaper exec announced as new chair of NMC

The NMC did not listen to or properly investigate concerns about Midwives at Furness General Hospital.

The Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care has today published its Lessons Learned Review which heavily criticises how the Nursing and Midwifery Council handled concerns about midwives’ fitness to practise at the Furness General Hospital.

The review was commissioned by Jeremy Hunt, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, after up to 19 babies and mothers died at the hospital between 2004 and 2012 as a result of mistakes by the staff of its maternity unit. A previous inquiry into the deaths concluded that 13 of the infants and women would have lived if they had received better care.


The Review recognises that the NMC has made many changes and improvements since 2014, but concludes that there are two significant areas requiring additional, urgent work: the NMC's approach to the value of evidence from and communication with patients; and its commitment in practice to transparency.

The NMC failed to act on information.

The 80-page makes a series of recommendations and heavily criticises the actions of the NMC after the regulator failed to take any action for two years after information was supplied by the police on maternity staff.

Chief Executive of the Professional Standards Authority, Harry Cayton, said; "What happened at Furness General Hospital remains shocking, and the tragic deaths of babies and mothers should never have happened. The findings in the Review we are publishing today show that the response of the NMC was inadequate.

"Although the NMC has made good progress with its technical handling of complaints and concerns, there remain cultural problems which it must remedy in order for the public to have confidence in its ability to protect them from harm."

We have made improvements.

Responding to the review, Jackie Smith, the outgoing NMC Chief Executive and Registrar said: “The NMC’s approach to the Morecambe Bay cases – in particular the way we communicated with the families – was unacceptable and I am truly sorry for this.

"We take the findings of this review extremely seriously and we’re committed to improving the way we communicate with families, witnesses and all those involved in the fitness to practise process.

“Since 2014 we’ve made significant changes to improve the way we work and as the report recognises, we’re now a very different organisation.

“The changes we’ve made puts vulnerable witnesses and families affected by failings in care at the heart of our work. But we know that there is much more to do."

Lessons have been learned.

Responding to the review, Philip Graf, Chair of the NMC said: “We welcome this review and we will act on the lessons learned, ensuring that the views of families and patients are central to everything we do.

“We will also work closely with the PSA, the professions and other regulators to take forward the report’s important recommendations.”

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