AAPE copies below a response received from the NMC following the circular on Friday 29th June.

AAPE circulates information in the public domain, and the article in Independent Nurse was brought to our attention by several AAPE members and circulated for general interest.

As our circulation list includes a wide range of professional and regulator representatives this enables us to receive and circulate their responses to press news.

We are pleased and to receive their comments in clarification of the issues raised in the Independent Nurse article.

You may be aware of comments by Katrina Maclaine, RCN nurse practitioner adviser, in a news item titled ‘Advanced nurse practitioner register delayed until 2009’ published in ‘Independent Nurse’ magazine (25/06/07) which suggested that the NMC’s “…register for advanced nurse practitioners is likely to be put on hold until 2009”.

‘Independent Nurse’ did not approach the NMC for comment before publishing this news item which is not accurate. I should be most grateful if you could clarify this via your website and your mailing list as I am concerned that nurses who have read ‘Independent Nurse’, or who may have learnt about the content elsewhere, may have concerns.

The following is the text of a letter from Susan Aitkenhead which has been sent to ‘Independent Nurse’ clarifying the situation:

“I was concerned to read that apparently the NMC’s “…register for advanced nurse practitioners is likely to be put on hold until 2009″ (Independent Nurse, 25/06/07). This is not the case. The NMC agreed that ‘advanced nurse practitioner’ should be a registrable qualification and sought approval from the Privy Council to open a sub-part to the nurses’ part of the register in December 2005”.

“Following this interval, the NMC was encouraged that the recent White Paper Trust, Assurance and Safety – the Regulation of Health Professionals in the 21st Century, states, ‘The Department will discuss with the Nursing and Midwifery Council the outcome of their consultation on advanced nursing practice to agree next steps’. The NMC has interpreted this positively and looks forward to working in partnership with all stakeholders to progress this. We currently await further detail from the White Paper Implementation Plan. Therefore, it is not possible to pre-empt any debate on the progression of this work, as many aspects from the White Paper will cross over to the work on advanced nursing practice such as revalidation. Until such time, it is neither helpful nor possible to speculate on the likely timescale for opening a further sub-part to the nurses’ part of the register”.

Craig Turton
Media Relations & Public Affairs Manager Nursing & Midwifery Council