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The Nursing and Midwifery Council has announced it is ready to approve its new standards of proficiency for future specialist community public health nurses (SCPHN) – including standards for health visiting, community nursing specialist practice qualifications (SPQs) and associated programme standards. Alongside representatives from all professional bodies, the iHV has worked closely with the NMC over the last two and a half years as part of their collaborative programme of work to develop the new post-registration standards.

The NMC states that:

“The new standards are intended to reflect the changing landscape and ambition for the care and treatment of people in the community. The new standards are an opportunity for more professionals to develop a greater depth of knowledge and broader skills that really reflect the complexity, responsibility and diversity of modern community nursing and public health nursing practice”.

The iHV also contributed to the consultation of the draft standards which ran from April to August 2021 and received 2,363 responses – including from nurses, health visitors, members of the public and organisations. The NMC highlighted that the responses were ‘predominantly positive’ with a ‘small number of suggested improvements’ required.

The NMC has refined the SCPHN standards and has made a prescribing qualification optional, as well as strengthening aspects around mental health, wellbeing, leading services, managing risk, safeguarding, infant nutrition, and cultural competence.

The final draft standards have now been agreed and will be taken before the NMC’s governing council for approval on 26 May. The papers ahead of the meeting of the Council on 26 May can be found here.

The finalised standards are expected to be published in the next few weeks. The NMC is also seeking approval from Council to consult on proposed changes to our pre-registration education programme standards. These standards ensure that nursing and midwifery programmes support students to learn and achieve the knowledge and skills that they’ll need to become registered professionals, and to deliver safe, effective and kind care.

Professor Geraldine Walters, Executive Director of professional practice at the NMC, said:

“These new co-produced post-registration standards will give professionals the additional knowledge, skills, and aptitude they need to provide specialist support and care to people in their homes and in the community. Council approval of the standards would mark a significant milestone toward more modern, effective care for people in community settings and improved public health for our wider communities.”

iHV publishes its response to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) online consultation on Draft standards for post-registration nursing including Specialist Community Public Health Nursing – health visiting.

We welcome the development of proficiencies specific to the three SCPHN fields of health visiting, school nursing and occupational health nursing. We believe that this is an important strengthening of the regulatory status of health visiting so that the public can have assurances of what can be expected of a SCPHN health visitor. We also set out some additional recommendations for enhancements of the draft proficiencies themselves.

We believe that the proposed new standards provide a timely opportunity to re-envision health visiting and Specialist Community Public Health Nursing. We are committed to build on the strength of evidence in support of the vital contribution SCPHN health visitors make to improving the health and life chances of people across the life-course from its earliest days in their families, communities where they live, learn and work at a time of widening inequalities and persistent as well as new public health challenges.

We strongly encourage all health visitors and others with an interest in child and family public health to take the opportunity to make their own responses to the NMC consultation and we hope that, by publishing our response, this will assist health visitors and others to consider their own responses to the consultation. The closing date for responses to the consultation is 2 August 2021.

Please also see our Voices Blog on ‘Future Health Visiting – summarising the key issues.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last week the NMC launched its consultation on draft standards for community and specialist community public health nursing (SCPHN). These set the expectations of future health visitors along with school nurses and occupational health nursing. The new NMC standards offer the opportunity to build on the advances in the evidence base for universal child and family health visiting for the pressing public health challenges of our times. It is vitally important that the views of health visitors are heard and shape these new standards.

The NMC is providing opportunities to be informed of the issues, to ask questions and to take part in the consultation. We encourage all health visitors to take up these opportunities.

iHV members can also shape the iHV’s response by joining us at our forthcoming iHV networking events for members which will focus on the NMC consultation:


iHV Student Networking Event – Future health visiting: Next steps for me and the profession

21 May 2021 (for student health visitor iHV members only) 

In our first “iHV Student Networking Event” on 21 May, we will explore the crucial first year and preceptorship; and we will share views on the draft NMC standards for the Future SCPHN-health visiting.

Your experiences matter and  will help us to formulate our response to the NMC’s consultation on the proposed standards. We have invited a short input from the NMC as well as from a practitioner with recent experience of preceptorship.

This webinar is for iHV Student Members ONLY. To book on, you will need your iHV membership number to access the tickets.


Practice Education Networking Event – Future health visiting: Next steps for the profession

16 June 2021 (open to all iHV members)

In our second “Practice Education Networking Event” on 16 June, we extend a wide invitation to all our iHV members who have an interest in education and standards for future health visitors. This too will help us to formulate our response to the NMC’s consultation on the proposed standards and we have invited a short input from the NMC as well as from a current Lead Practice Teacher / Assessor – health visitor.

This webinar is for iHV Members ONLY. To book on, you will need your iHV membership number to access the tickets.


Where can I find more information on the consultation?

We encourage all health visitors (whether you are an iHV member or not) to take the time to read the NMC consultation documents.

The new standards are intended to equip future health visitors to meet the public health needs of the future.

The four principles of health visiting formulated in 1977, and later included in current standards of proficiency for SCPHN have stood the test of time. Now is the time to consider whether the draft standards:

  • Provide a compelling vision for the future of health visiting across the four nations of the UK;
  • Proposed six ‘spheres of influence’ are pitched at the right level and are relevant to emerging health needs and the evidence base for practice;
  • ‘Field-specific’ proficiencies for health visiting capture the distinctive knowledge, skills and attributes required for future health visitors;
  • Will command the support of the profession; and
  • Will help service users and employers to know what can be expected of the SCPHN health visitor.

 

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has launched their public consultation for specialist community public health nursing (SCPHN) standards – building on ambitions for community and public health nursing.

The new NMC standards offer the opportunity to build on the advances in the evidence base for universal child and family health visiting for the pressing public health challenges of our times. It is vitally important that the views of health visitors are heard and shape these new standards.

We will be responding from the iHV – as well as submitting your own response, look out for our mailings on ways that you can help shape the iHV’s response.

 

The standards, for specialist community public health nursing (SCPHN) and specialist practice qualifications (SPQs), will equip the next generation of community and public health nurses working in health and social care with the right proficiencies to care for people in a rapidly changing world.

These essential education standards were last updated over 15 years ago. But we need fit for purpose standards that reflect the realities of modern nursing in health and social care now

These draft standards, which have been co-produced with subject experts, will provide the right proficiencies these professionals need to support and care for people in a rapidly changing world.

The consultation will run until Monday 2 August 2021. Normally these NMC consultations run for 12 weeks but they’ve extended this one to more than 16 weeks to give you and your colleagues more time to take part given the continued pressures on services caused by the pandemic.

As part of the review of all of educational standards, the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) is now focusing on post-registration qualifications – starting by looking at the post-registration qualifications relating to community and primary care.

To understand what’s important and to get them right, they need your input.

Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (SCPHN)

Nurses who work in public health are working in the most challenging public health crisis for generations. NMC is currently reviewing their existing Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (SCPHN) post-registration standards to ensure they equip these practitioners with the knowledge, skills and attributes needed to lead and deliver care, now and in the future.

They’ll be developing new standards of proficiency for health visiting, school nursing and occupational health nursing fields of SCPHN practice, and the standards for universities who wish to deliver programmes leading to these qualifications.

Specialist practice qualifications (SPQ)

NMC is also developing new standards of proficiency that will lead to a specialist practice qualification in community nursing. These nurses are the lynchpin of primary and community care as they lead, support and deliver care to people of all ages, many of whom have complex mental, physical and social care needs, often when they’re at their most vulnerable.

NMC wants to hear from you

NMC wants these new standards to be ambitious and transformative, and knows that they’ll only achieve that by working collaboratively with you. They need to draw on your experience and expertise, and to hear a diverse range of views from all backgrounds.

NMC has arranged a series of webinars where you can find out more and send your feedback on what’s important and what these new standards should cover.

Please register for the webinar(s) that interest you by clicking on the links. Please also share with anyone in your networks who may also be interested:

SPQ webinar Time and date Register

SCPHN webinars Time and date Register

  • Future specialist public health nursing: SCPHN core standards (for school nurses, occupational health nurses and health visitors): 29 June 2020, 12:00 – 13:00.

You can also test to see if your system is ready to access our webinars.

Can’t make the webinars?

To find out more about the review please visit the NMC website and send them some feedback on the questions they’re asking at this early stage of engagement. There will be other opportunities to get involved as NMC develops the standards.

If you have any queries, or wish to get involved in helping NMC to develop the new standards, please email [email protected]

The Institute of Health Visiting (iHV), alongside 5 health organisations, is delighted to publish the new Recommended National Curriculum for Specialist Community Public Health Nursing – Health Visiting/School Nursing (0-19 child public health nursing services).

The Recommended National Curriculum is a consensus statement of the overarching knowledge, skills and attributes that can be expected of Specialist Community Public Health Nurses delivering health visiting and school nursing services to families, children and young people from age 0-19.  It is the product of a consensus-building partnership between the Institute of Health Visiting (iHV), Unite/Community Practitioner Health Visitor Association (CPHVA), United Kingdom Standing Conference (UKSC), National Forum of School Health Educators (NFSHE), School and Public Health Nurses Association (SAPHNA) and the Royal College of Nursing (RCN).

Recommended National Curriculum

Developed for use by curriculum developers and providers of health visitor education including higher education institutes, private providers, charities and other voluntary sector organisations, amongst many others, the Curriculum provides authoritative evidence-based guidance applicable across the whole UK in the context of rapid change in policy and practice, fragmentation of services and inconsistency in delivery.

Dr Cheryll Adams CBE, Executive Director at the Institute of Health Visiting, said:

“Parents, children and young people consistently highly rank having good access to a health visitor or school nurse as being important as a source of advice and support due to their reliable knowledge and expertise on the health issues that matter to them.  The publication of this Recommended National Curriculum provides a consensus statement of the overarching knowledge, skills and attributes for nurses to be educated and trained to deliver this specialist level of community public health nursing across the UK. The partners collaborating in the development of this curriculum commend its use to commissioners and providers of health visiting and school nursing education and services, and to the NMC as it reviews its Standards of Proficiency.”

The Recommended National Curriculum provides a firm basis for future developments in individual higher education institutions and also at a national level, when the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) proceeds with its Programme of Change for Education and reviews the Standards for Specialist Community Public Health Nursing.

The curriculum also endorses health visiting and school nursing as a distinctive level and form of practice that warrants regulation, to assure the public of the professional standards that they can expect of registrants prepared for and practising as health visitors and school nurses.

9 – 15 October, Baby Loss Awareness Week #BLAW2018, sees the publication of a significant piece of national collaborative work to develop a National Bereavement Care Pathway (NBCP).

Statistics for #babyloss tell us that around 15 babies died before, during or soon after birth every day in the UK in 2015. Of those, 9 babies a day were stillborn1. Additionally, one in four women will experience a miscarriage in their lifetime and one in one hundred will endure recurrent miscarriages (more than 3 in a row)2. Many of these women and their partners will go on to have a successful pregnancy and others may already be parents. Therefore, as health visitors we will already be working alongside many families affected by baby loss, and will contribute to the delivery of quality care to support new parents through a devastating time.

iHV has been honoured to be part of the National Bereavement Care Pathway (NBCP) work for England over the past year, meeting alongside 13 or more different national charities and professional bodies (Bliss, Lullaby Trust, RCM, RCN, etc) on the project led by Marc Harder for SANDS, with the support of the Department of Health and the All Party Parliamentary Group on Baby Loss. The aim for the project is to ensure that all bereaved parents are offered equal, high quality, individualised, safe and sensitive care in any experience of pregnancy or baby loss, be that miscarriage, termination of pregnancy for fetal anomaly, stillbirth, neonatal death, or sudden unexpected death in infancy (up to 12 months).

The NBCP Core Group has overseen the development of specific pathways to support each experience of loss described above, with the Training sub-group creating a training toolkit to support dissemination. There has been a Wave 1 pilot of the pathway in 32 sites from October 2017 and a further 21 sites in Wave 2, including one area of Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust that employs health visitors. Valuable feedback from hundreds of professionals and parents has fed into the project and shaped this vital work to ensure that it supports the delivery of consistently confident, parent-centred, empathic and safe care when a baby dies.

Go to: www.nbcpathway.org.uk to review the Sudden and Unexpected Death in Infancy (up to 12 months) pathway. See also: National Bereavement Care Pathway – standards.

The work is now heading towards national roll out and will bring huge benefits to parents and professionals alike. Please share this work amongst your health visiting colleagues and managers to discuss how the pathway and standards might be implemented in your area. Dissemination is key – help spread the message as widely as you can with all your multi-agency colleagues (GPs, Midwives etc) and check they are aware of the emergence of the national pathway.

Of note there is also work commencing in Scotland this month to bring the NBCP project to Scotland. Please contact [email protected] if you are an HV and would be interested in contributing to the Scotland project.

  1. https://www.sands.org.uk/about-sands/media-centre/blog/2017/06/every-96-minutes-baby-dies
  2.  https://www.tommys.org/our-organisation/charity-research/pregnancy-statistics/miscarriage accessed 27.9.18

iHV welcomes the National Minimum Standards and Core Curriculum for Immunisation Training for Registered Healthcare Practitioners which have just been published.

The National Minimum Standards and Core Curriculum for Immunisation Training for Registered Healthcare Practitioners sets the standards and lists the essential topics which should be incorporated into immunisation training for registered healthcare practitioners.

The aim of the national standards is to describe the training that should be given to all practitioners engaging in any aspect of immunisation so that they are able to confidently, competently and effectively promote and administer vaccinations.

Dr Cheryll Adams CBE, executive director, iHV, said:

“iHV welcomes this new guidance from Public Health England on the training and standards required to support a high quality, safe and effective immunisation programme that achieves high uptake.  It is important that HVs, who visit every baby and family, have a good knowledge of immunisation and are confident to advise parents. Comprehensive training and regular updates combined with supervision and support as laid out in the guidance will help support HVs to achieve this.”