Survey reveals primary care nurses' concerns about revalidation

Many might leave health service to avoid going through the process 

Many primary care nurses may leave the NHS to avoid going through the process needed to meet new requirements for revalidation by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). 

A survey of 508 primary care nurses by Independent Nurse magazine reveals that nearly a fifth would retire early, or knew of colleagues who would leave the profession rather than take part in the new system, which starts in April. 

Almost half of the respondents were over 55 years of age, and almost 80% of those questioned thought the NMC’s revalidation pilots were not representative of nurses in primary care.

They highlighted the fact that many nurses in this sector can work in isolation in GP surgeries and would find it difficult to secure the support of other nurses or time for study days.

Revalidation will replace the post-registration education and practice (PREP) system, and requires nurses to provide evidence every three years of 450 practice hours, 35 hours of continuing professional development, practice-related feedback, written reflective accounts and a reflective discussion with an approved confirmer.

A Queen’s Nursing Institute survey of more than 3,000 practice nurses published last month shows that respondents had concerns about the time required to complete the revalidation requirements alongside their demanding workload. They also expressed worries about access to training, fees for online portfolio tools, insufficient information or support, and not having a senior nurse to act as their confirmer.

More than 20% said they had not considered how they would meet the requirements of NMC revalidation. 

According to the council, 30,000 of about 700,000 registrants will complete revalidation in the first three months of the process, and 15% of the first cohort have started their application. 

NMC director of continued practice Katerina Kolyva said more than 30% of those who took part in the revalidation pilots worked in a primary care setting, and that the pilots confirmed the process is ‘achievable and realistic’. 


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