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PREP standards 'wholly inadequate', say MPs


The time nurses must spend in practice and training in order to re-register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council every three years is “wholly inadequate”, MPs have warned.

Nurses must re-register with the regulator every three years as part of a “periodic renewal” requiring them to state in that period they have undertaken at least 450 hours of practice and 35 hours of continuous professional development.

In a report about the NMC published last week, the health select committee said: “The current standard for re-registration…is wholly inadequate, as this tells patients and the public nothing about the quality of nursing and midwifery practice undertaken by the registrant.

“There is also no routine assessment of whether nurses and midwives have even met this minimal standard. The NMC instead relies on honesty within the profession and ‘whistle-blowing’ when registrants are dishonest.”

The report reveals the NMC scrutinises about 4% of nurses’ portfolios to determine whether they meet post-registration education and practice (PREP) standards, as part of a risk-based process.

The regulator told Nursing Times this had uncovered one nurse whose practice hours included working at a riding school and whose CPD amounted to training in horse acupuncture. Her re-registration was refused.

NMC chief executive and registrar Dickon Weir-Hughes said: “Revalidation will supersede our existing PREP system and we are determined that the new system will be evidence-based, risk-based, proportionate and cost effective.” The system should be ready by 2014.


Readers' comments (27)

  • First of all get your facts right as nurses we have to re register every year!!! not every three years.

    secondley Dickon Weir-Hughes you as chief exe should know that.

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  • Shame I thought I was due a refund then as have being paying on a yearly basis. Its not as if yearly registration was a new fact.
    I presume that will mean the fees going up again to pay for all this revalidation?

    Thank goodness I am retiring

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  • This will be just another excuse to hike the fees and with absolutely nothing to show for the increase but added bureaucracy and form-filling.

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  • the whole nmc appears to need a thorough overhaul. regulation and prep seem to be fairly vague and haphazard under the current system although i do wonder what MPs know about nursing and how it should be regulated.

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  • Renewing your current registration

    How to keep your registration up to date

    To stay on the register, you must renew your registration every three years. We call this periodic renewal. You must also pay an annual fee at the end of the first and second year of the registration period. We call this annual retention.

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  • Health Comittee Reports published last week on health care regulators including the Annual Accountability Hearing with the NMC

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  • With regards to Anonymous, 11.14, you need to be sure of your facts before posting comments. As explained above, we, as nurses DO re-register every 3 years, this is done when you recieve your Notification of Practice (NOP) forms from the NMC, where you are required to confirm that you have fulfilled your practise and CPD hours.

    The NMC are however, very lax in carrying out confirmations of this, and have had their wrists slapped by the DH. The HPC are much more active in ensuring their registrants are fit for practise than the NMC have ever been, but it seems this is going to change......

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  • I have no problem at all with providing evidence of appropriate and relavent CPD - I have thought for a while that the current system is a bit lax - but please NMC lets drop the idea of producing pretty profiles with lots of reflective writing in them!!

    Surely evidence of having attended seminars, accessing information / evidence databases and most importantly having regular clinical supervision is more indicative of safe practice.

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  • Bill Toy

    i agree with your comment about reflective writing. we do enough reflection at work and during CPD and work enough hours without having to spend more time at home pondering over what to write to appease the NMC.

    There system is lax but there is also a risk in a massive hike in fees for other systems.

    I just wonder whether employers, with further training, should play a greater role in and take more responsibility for controlling quality and safety of work. In this way they would also be more engaged in the work of nurses and have greater insight into their needs as well as being forced to be more reflective on their own standards which might help to avoid situations such as Castleview and other substandard practice in various establishments across the country.

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  • sorry about grammatical and spelling errors above but am in a rush. On a small notebook I detest typing in such a small space and then not being able to edit once the comment has been submitted, when one usually notices one's errors!

    I have put this to NT as the Telegraph have a good system but unfortunately so far nothing has changed. For longer pieces I sometimes type in Word and then copy and paste but this also has some drawbacks such as layout, etc.

    Never mind, I hope at least my comment is clear.

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