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Skills for Health framework sets standard for advanced clinical practitioners in primary care

New core capabilities framework may mean primary care nurses needing to top up their skills and knowledge

New core capabilities framework may mean primary care nurses needing to top up their skills and knowledge

Picture shows a healthcare worker looking at a screen. New core capabilities framework may mean primary care nurses needing to top up their skills and knowledge.
Picture: iStock

A core capabilities framework to support primary care nurses in England in demonstrating advanced clinical practice could mean many nurses having to top up their knowledge and skills.

A Skills for Health document detailing the new standards, endorsed by NHS England and NHS Improvement, says many existing advanced care practitioners or primary care nurses ‘will have areas for development and may need to top up their academic knowledge or their capabilities in order to evidence the core requirements in this framework.’

Advanced clinical practice roles in primary care and general practice have previously been developed without a set standard, resulting in disparity and confusion across the sector says Skills for Health, a not-for-profit organisation that helps set standards for the healthcare workforce.

Nurses would be able to demonstrate their ability to commissioners, employers and patients

The Skills for Health document says many nurses may have to top up their knowledge to evidence the core requirements of the framework, which has been designed to support primary care and general practice nurses and allow them to demonstrate their advanced capabilities to commissioners, employers and patients.

The framework comprises four domains:

  • Person-centred collaborative working.
  • Assessments, investigations and diagnosis.
  • Condition management, prevention and treatment.
  • Leadership and management, education and research.

Within the domains are 13 capabilities which describe the skills, knowledge and behaviours required for advanced clinical practitioners.

The framework was commissioned by NHS England’s general practice ten-point action plan team and Health Education England.

Skills for Health says: ‘Primary care and general practice are ever evolving to meet the increasing and more complex needs of local communities/populations. This will require new ways of working and the development of multi-professional general practice and primary care teams. This framework provides a standard and greater clarity on the capabilities for nurses working at the advanced clinical practice level in general practice.’


Find out more

Skills for Health – Core Capabilities Framework for Advanced Clinical Practice (Nurses) Working in General Practice / Primary Care in England


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