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NMC launches new standards to ‘shape next generation of nurses’

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Alfie Rankin Nursing

The Nursing and Midwifery Council has launched a new set of standards on the skills and knowledge the “next generation of nurses will learn to enable them to deliver world class care”.

The nursing regulator has also introduced standards for a “more modern and innovative approach” to the way that universities and train nurses and midwives.Jackie Smith chief executive of the NMC stated that the "new standards represent a huge leap forward, they raise the bar for the next generation of nurses and not only match the demands of the role but the ambition of the profession.”

She went on to state, “We’ve also overhauled the way universities train nurses and midwives, they’ll be given more flexibility to harness new ways of working and embrace technology so they can equip the nurses and midwives of tomorrow with the skills they need to deliver world class care for years to come,” The standards took two years of planning and have been developed alongside nurses in collaboration with students, educators, healthcare professionals, charities and patient groups from across the UK.

This follows changes in March that will see all nurses in the future trained in the same set of procedures and communication skills regardless of their field of practice. The NMC also agreed to remove its cap on the number of hours students can spend on simulation activities, in spite of concerns that this could potentially reduce the amount of time on placements.

Major changes to mentoring have also been put in place, meaning students will  be supported by supervisors and assessors in both practice as well as academic settings. Meanwhile, as part of the various changes, the regulator will be adopting the Royal Pharmaceutical Society competency framework for prescribers.It will be removing its standards for medicines management and working with the society to produce “consistent guidance” for all health and social care professionals.

Launching the standards, the NMC said they hoped they would give nurses a greater understanding across all four fields of practice, in particular mental health.The NMC also stated that nurses would have greater responsibilities in public health and be given the skills to train as prescribers immediately after qualifying, rather than having to wait three years.