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NMC agrees 'in principle' to nurses removing themselves from register


Nurses accused of incompetence could in future leave the Nursing and Midwifery Council register in order to avoid full fitness to practise procedures, under plans agreed in principle by the regulator.

At an NMC council meeting last week, members agreed to the idea of nurses being allowed to voluntarily remove themselves from the register in certain circumstances. These include cases involving mental health problems and “minor conduct or conviction cases”.

Doctors are already currently able to do this, but not nurses or midwives.

However, council members raised concerns that the NMC would currently be legally unable to bar such individuals from applying to the register again in future.

Concerns were expressed by members on whether decisions over nurses re-entering the register would sufficiently take into account professional expert opinion.

The plans, which are yet to gain formal ministerial approval, will be discussed further at a later meeting.


Readers' comments (7)

  • Bonkers! We have enough trouble with rogue nurses anyway. What would constitute minor issues. I am a bit more ambivalent about mental health issues but why if someone had minor mental health issues would they want to remove THEMSELVES?? Surely if they got better they could return to work anyway. I think this is as dangerous a decision as the new interim CEO of the NMC being the director who has not been able to keep the current fitness to practise hearings on track. I presume this is a way of cutting costs and looking as if they are coping with fitness to practise cases by allowing people to opt out. If a nurse is not fit to practise it needs to be looked into. Not all nurses will be struck off but may need retraining etc. How and who will decide if the misdemeanour initiating a fitness to practise proceeding is minor or not. At the moment the NMC is run by mainly NON NURSING PERSONNEL who haven't a clue.

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  • I think we should all remove ourselves from the register in protest at the absolute shambles that is our regulatory body. A bunch of clowns running around a minefield!!

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  • The NMC report a 48% increase in nurses reported to them, for fitness to practice by their Managers ( whose fitness to practice is even more suspect in some cases, than the nurses they report). Where is the "Blame free environment" where it is possible to make mistakes etc without getting severely punished for it?

    Based on my review of the reasons for the reportings of these nurses ; it is the Managers of these nurses who should be being investigated for their incompetence and abusive behavior towards the staff, rather than the nurse. The NMC then investigates the Nurse as though they are investigating a major crime( which is some cases it is true they are, but not for the vast majority of nurses,) and take years over doing so too - it can be up to 4 years.

    At that rate it would be in everyone's interests for the Nurse who is stuck in the queue, and who is condemned until found innocent. To just de-register themselves, have done with the petty nursing nonsense and would be far better off go off and find themselves something more rewarding to do with people who appreciate them; rather stuck with the NMC and their ex management who endlessly try to stab them in the back. Honestly Nursing is for children, who happen to have only grown older in body but not in behavior...

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  • why should nurses leave for 'minor conduct and conviction' and 'mental health' issues. You're not telling us that if a nurse goes off sick with work related stress, or makes a drug error because of the current appalling working conditions that they should just jack it all in without help and support from their employers.

    Isn't it time that the government, regulatory bodies, employers, HR and management took some responsibility for their staff and realised that a lot of mistakes that are happening are because nurses just can't cope anymore.

    What are we paying these people for?

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  • What's happened to the days when you got support and supervision if you were struggling in your job.

    What do the mental health charities have to say about this idea?

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  • Many nurses do remove themselves from the register - it's called resigning or retiring because they can't stand working for the NHS any longer.

    Just because a nurse is 'accused of incompetence' doesn't mean they are incompetent - nurses get accusations thrown at them day in day out, it's part of the job now.

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  • It really demonstrates the high opinion the NMC have of themselves ( an authoritarian response) that they think they can give us permission to to de-register ourselves when we have had a surfeit of their nonsense.

    If I chose not to pay, then it is I who am de-registering myself, not them.

    And if they don't get my money, I am certain that they will remove me from the register, whether this was a slip or intentional on my part!

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