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What will the nurse of tomorrow look like?

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The Nursing & Midwifery Council has opened up a consultation on the future of nursing education. What do you think the Nurse of tomorrow should look like?

From hospitals and schools to care homes and the workplace, over 650,000 nurses deliver high-quality care to millions of people across the UK every week.

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Now the nursing regulator – the body responsible for setting standards – wants to hear the views of patients and the public on proposals to radically overhaul nursing education.

With a changing population, more care in the community and advancing technology, care must be delivered differently. Today sees the launch of a vital consultation from the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) seeking views on a wholesale review of the standards that UK trained nurses will need to meet before they can work as a registered nurse. The views of the public will be vital in helping to shape what nursing will look like in 2030.

Jackie Smith, NMC Chief Executive and Registrar said: “The health and care landscape is changing at an unprecedented rate and nurses are being asked to undertake more complex roles than ever before. In the coming years many thousands of nurses will join our register, delivering care to millions of people. Our standards must ensure that they are able to work in ways that are not only fit for today, but also for the future.

“The vital role that the nurse plays touches all of us in society. That’s why we not only want to hear from those within the health and care sector but also from the public who will have a key role to play in telling us what they want from the nurse of the future.”

Over the next thirteen weeks the NMC wants to hear from as wide a section of society as possible and will be running a series of events open to anyone who wants to hear more or share their views. We will also be hosting online events, twitter chats and workshops across the four countries of the UK where we will be discussing our plans and listening to views. Anyone can join in the conversation on social media using #nurse2030.

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The NMC’s consultation on proposed pre-registration education standards for the future nurse runs from 13 June until 12 September. You can take part here.

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NMC launches consultation on proposed standards for nursing associates

Under the plans nursing associates would also be subject to the same revalidation requirements as nurses and midwives when renewing their registration with the NMC as well as the same fitness to practise processes should something go wrong.

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The Nursing and Midwifery Council has announced the launch of the consultation the proposed approach to the regulation of nursing associates.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) have outlined an approach to education including ambitious standards of proficiency for the role that will enable nursing associates to deliver first-class care.

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According to Health Education England (HEE), the Nursing Associate role is a new support role which will sit alongside existing healthcare support workers and fully-qualified registered nurses to deliver hands-on care for patients. The role is designed to bridge the gap between healthcare assistants (HCAs) and registered nurses.

2,000 trainee nursing associates are currently just over half-way through their two-year training programmes to become registered nursing associates and HEE has announced 45,000 extra places before 2027.

The NMC has set out how they expect the existing Code, with a new introduction, to apply to nursing associates as well as nurses and midwives, ensuring that the same high standards of professional behaviour and conduct will apply to everyone on the register.

Jackie Smith Chief Executive and Registrar of the NMC said: “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.

“We think that our proposals will ensure that nursing associates are equipped with the skills they need to deliver excellent patient care and to support registered nurses and other health and care professionals throughout their careers.”

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Under the plans nursing associates would also be subject to the same revalidation requirements as nurses and midwives when renewing their registration with the NMC as well as the same fitness to practise processes should something go wrong.

Over the coming weeks, the NMC will be holding workshops across the country for trainees, registered nurses, employers, patients and the public. There will also be regular twitter chats and webinars with lots of opportunities for people to learn more about what regulation means for the new role and share their views.

The Consultation on the regulation of a new profession will run until 2nd July 2018.

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NMC removes cap on hours student nurses can complete in simulated practice

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The Nursing and Midwifery Council has announced it will lift the cap on simulated training for student nurses.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has announced it has removed the hard cap on the number of clinical hours, which is currently set at 300 hours, student nurses can instead complete in simulated practice.

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Initially, the regulator said it wanted to raise the cap to 1,150 hours but critics raised concerns about the reduction in time on clinical placements.

The results of the consultation showed that a significant proportion of respondents wanted there to continue to be a cap as many showed concern it would reduce the total number of hours completed on clinical placements.

Instead, the NMC has not specified a cap but warned that they would be monitoring universities use of simulation.

The NMC says this flexible approach aligns with other UK healthcare regulators.

An NMC spokesperson told the NursingTimes“We will no longer state a maximum number for hours of simulation to be included in educational programmes for pre-registration nursing.

“Our new approach is to be less prescriptive and more outcome-focused, allowing autonomy to enhance and develop forms and uses of simulation for learning and assessment that facilitate safe and effective care,”

“However, we will monitor and ensure that the type of simulation, and how it is applied, is appropriate to meet the learning outcomes of our standards through our educational quality assurance process,”

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NMC to ‘investigate’ rise in the annual registration fee

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The nursing regulator will keep the fee at £120 for this year but says it will need to review the fee ahead of next year.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council has confirmed it will not raise the annual registration fee this year but says it will need to review the payment in more detail ahead of next year.

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Falling numbers of nurses are the “greatest risk”, admits the NMC, and goes on to explain that it predicts a £1.4m loss between the current financial year and 2018-19 because of nurses leaving the register.

Offical figures show that more nurses are now leaving the NMC register than joining.

The yearly retention fee payment has seen a rise of 64% since 2013 despite NHS pay being increased by only 4%.

Although nursing associates are set to join the NMC it is thought the two budgets would be ring-fenced.

It states; “Our budget for 2018-19 assumes a continuation of the fee at £120 with a further potential decline in income as described previously.

“Given we are in a relatively healthy financial position, we are not proposing an increase in the fee this year.

“During 2018-19, we will be reviewing the fee level in more detail, as well as improving the modelling of income for future years. This reflects growing concern about the long-term trend of the size of the register”.

NMC fee increases are approved by the Privy Council and are subjected to external consultation.

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