The Nursing and Midwifery Council has agreed not to increase the annual registration fee this year, meaning it will remain at £120.
At an NMC council meeting to discuss the regulator’s budget and corporate plan for 2016–17, it was also revealed that nurses will be eligible for a refund of some of their annual registration fee if they leave the profession part way through the year.
The change will be introduced later this year after a new system is brought in that will allow nurses to pay the annual registration fee in either quarterly instalments or the usual lump sum.
- NMC to bring in fee payment by instalments ‘as soon as it can’
- NMC to discuss allowing registrants to pay fee in instalments
At the council meeting on Wednesday, members approved a recommendation to keep the £120 fee at its current level after NMC council papers noted the regulator’s financial reserves were within its target range.
It follows last year’s controversial decision to raise the fee to £120 from £100, which itself came after a previous increase in 2013 from £76.
Meanwhile, council papers confirmed that, from May, registrants will be able to make quarterly payments for registration fees due from 1 June onwards. Although new entrants to the register will not be able to make use of this new system until December.
From the end of August onwards, if a nurse has paid the annual registration fee up front they will then be eligible for a refund for some of the money if they retire or leave the profession before the end of the year.
It will “ensure parity of treatment between payment methods”, said the council papers.
However, they also noted: “We estimate a reduction in annual income of about £0.5m as a result of registrants paying quarterly who leave the register part way during the year.”