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August 2019

First full cycle of revalidation deemed a success

More than 600,000 nurses and midwives registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) have now been through revalidation at least once since it was first introduced three years ago.

This year’s annual revalidation report shows that between April 2016 and March 2019, 93% of those who were due to revalidate successfully demonstrated their continued ability to practise safely and effectively. In the past year (April 2018 - March 2019), 204,545 of nurses and midwives have revalidated.

The annual report also reveals that across the UK, 5-6% of people who are due to revalidate leave the register instead. When asked why, of the 52% who responded, more than half said they were retiring, just over a third (35%) were no longer practising, 5% cited ill health, and 6% said they could not meet the requirements – including practice hours, undertaking reflective discussion, obtaining practice-related feedback, or completing the written reflective accounts.

Published simultaneously was the NMC’s final independent evaluation report on the first three years of revalidation, conducted by Ipsos MORI, which found that, overall, revalidation had been successful.

Commenting on the experience of revalidating twice as a registered nurse, Dame Professor Donna Kinnair, Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), said: ‘Having been through the revalidation process myself, I can tell you how valuable a process it is for ensuring your skills and knowledge as a nurse are up-to-date, as well as giving you an opportunity to reflect on your development.

‘It is clearly a necessary process, and whilst we need to have a way of ensuring all our nurses continue to have the necessary skills, it should also be seen as one for learning and development rather than critical examination.’

Emma Broadbent, Director of Registration and Revalidation at the NMC, said: ‘The evidence showing that revalidation is really helping those on our register to reflect on their practice, as well as enhancing their professional pride and personal development, is great news.’