The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has announced changed to its return to practice procedures to boots the nursing workforce.
Foreign nurses and midwives who want to practise in the UK must comply with UK fitness to practise standards. In order to achieve this standard, foreign nurses and midwives must sit the professional test of competence. The NMC has announced that the cost of the professional test of competence will be reduced by 20%.
Other measures proposed by the NMC to make it as straightforward and cost effective as possible for nurses and midwives with the right skills to join the NMC register include:
- those wanting to re-join the register following a career break being able to choose a test of competence to demonstrate that their skills and knowledge are up to date, rather than undertake a course, which can take between three and 12 months to complete
- where people do choose a return to practice course, the NMC will no longer state the minimum length of the course. Educators will now be able to consider the skills and experience of the applicants and design the courses accordingly, increasing flexibility
- the introduction of a new test of competence assurance panel; a group of experienced nurses, midwives and other health and care professionals, will use their broad range of expertise to ensure consistency of tests across ferent test centres.
The NMC said:
“These changes are part of an ongoing review to improve the experience of those wanting to join our register. They will help to ensure that applicants with the right skills and knowledge can join the UK workforce as quickly as possible while ensuring high standards of care.”
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