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Regulator 'forced' to increase fees in response to funding change


Operating department practitioners and a range of other healthcare professions face having to pay higher registration fees, potentially paving the way for a similar move for nurses and midwives.

The Health and Care Professions Council, which regulates 16 professional groups, has today launched a consultation on proposals to increase its registration fees in 2015. The move potentially fires the starting gun for copycat moves by other regulators.

“We are very aware that our costs are funded entirely from the fees our registrants pay”

Marc Seale

The council is proposing an increase in the renewal fee from £80 to £90 per year with effect from 1 August.

It said the increase has been “instigated” following the government’s decision that the Professional Standards Authority should in future be funded by the regulators’ it oversees. 


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“We are compelled to review our fee levels in order to be able to fund this substantial increase to our costs,” the council said.

Similar fears have been voiced that nurses and midwives may face yet another increase in registration fees as a result of the government’s decision to cease funding the Professional Standards Authority.

Nursing and Midwifery Council, itself, has warned that it may have to pass on to registrants the financial burden of having to begin funding the Professional Standards Authority.

The Health and Care Professions Council said the remainder of its fee increase was needed to invest in IT systems, introduce dedicated quality control systems and manage fitness to practise processes.

It stated that the proposed renewal fee would still be the lowest of all the regulators overseen by the PSA and around a third less than the next highest fee.

Marc Seale, HCPC’s chief executive and registrar said: “We anticipate that the PSA funding will initially amount to approximately £1m per annum based on current registration numbers.

“We are disappointed by the decision because we believe it has a disproportionate impact on our registrants and the fees they pay,” he said.

He added: “The consultation sets out where the registrants’ fees are spent and why the increases are needed.” 

The consultation will run from 27 March until 6 May 2015. 

Earlier this week MPs debated the NMC’s decision last year to increase the annual registration fees for nurses and midwives from £100 to £120, including any further rise resulting from the government’s decision to pass on funding of the PSA.  

The debate, tabled by Labour MP for Blaydon David Anderson, was sparked by a petition calling on the government to review the process the NMC used to decide its annual registration fee.

The petition, started by mental health nurse Stephen Iwasyk, was signed by over 113,000 people.


Readers' comments (13)

  • How many part time nurses and midwives will consider leaving if the fees are increased yet again?

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  • The NHS is having to save £20 billion, Trusts have to find at least 4%- 5% CIPs (cost improvement savings) each year to make those savings. Are NMC and HCPC making CIP's? We have all been affected by redundancies, down grading, NHS reconfiguration of services (disguised as improving services to patients) and job losses. Even AFC is being diluted where nurses will no longer receive enhanced pay for working after 8pm/nights/weekends & BH's! Its about time the NMC and HCPC looked at tightening their money belts like everyone else instead of increasing subscriptions!

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  • I would definitely leave, I work part time by choice, and it would not be worth it,

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  • It's about time nmc fees were done pro rata so you pay according to the number hours worked !

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  • Yet again another case of 'in one hand & out of the other',- obviously referring to our generous (NOT!!) 1% pay rise. As much as I am not relishing getting older, in my entire career as a nurse (over 30 years) I can honestly say I have never looked forward to retiring as much as I have recently. I was considering working to 60 but 55 is seeming more appealing - and that is so sad.

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  • Gosh imagine a full career from the earliest date of qualification up until official retirement age - how much will a nurse have paid the NMC in fees and allowing for future increases? it doesn't bear thinking about and where does all this money go? and then there are indemnity fees and other professional expenses!

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  • Other professions have to pay alot more.
    I agree nurses pay is lousy but that is a separate issue. Proportionate fees are not right either because if you do damage on your time at work, the cost of action is no less. There is such a shortage of nurses more hours should be available.
    It is a small proportion of your income to be allowed to practice and to ensure that bad practice is identified and resolved. There have been too many examples of poor practice and the NMC must be able to function properly to promote good practice and protect the public.
    Stop moaning.

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  • Anonymous | 30-Mar-2015 12:34 pm

    'Other professions have to pay alot more.'

    perhaps they also get better service and value and earn more to pay it?

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  • Anonymous | 30-Mar-2015 12:34 pm

    that's a good old moan you have had there!

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  • Don't forget nurses pay seperately for the RCN which is another necessity ... Other professions this is all inclusive

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