This site is intended for healthcare professionals only

NMC slammed as 'confused' and 'dysfunctional' in interim review

Written by: | Published:

The NMC is confused about its primary purpose, distracted by its ambitions for expansion, and lacks a long-term financial strategy, the body charged with reviewing the nursing regulator has said.

The Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence (CHRE) began a strategic review of the NMC in February, on the orders of the DH. It published its interim report last week, which described the regulator as operating in an 'unsatisfactory and dysfunctional' manner.

'At the heart of the NMC's inability to succeed lies confusion over its regulatory purpose, lack of clear, consistent strategic direction, unbalanced working relationships and inadequate systems,'the CHRE said.

The interim report also criticised the NMC's financial management, hinted at potential fee increases, and revealed that the regulator is currently spending its savings.

'(The NMC's) income is fixed, unless it increases registration fees, and it is now spending down reserves. Its business planning is weak, its management information is unreliable and its IT systems are at risk.'

The report praised NMC staff for their perseverance and dedication, but said all employees had been hampered by 'multiple organisational weaknesses'.

The failures have led to a backlog of fitness to practise hearings, with 4,000 open cases currently open. The previous chair of the organisation, Professor Tony Hazell, and former CEO Professor Dickon Weir-Hughes resigned in March and January respectively.

Professor Judith Ellis, acting chair of the NMC, said the report 'turned a spotlight on serious problems in our governance, financial strategy and management information'.

'We accept the report's findings in its entirety and we are already working hard to address the recommendations,' she added.

Following a council meeting in March, the NMC stated it would aim to clear the backlog of hearings, and focus on its core regulatory function.

Projects such as a review of the third part of the register; regulation of healthcare assistants; and of advanced nurse practitioners (ANPs) have been shelved.

RCN ANP forum chair Jenny Aston said: 'The NMC appears to be focusing on getting through fitness to practice hearings instead of looking at ways to stop them having to be carried out in the first place.'

What do you think? Leave a comment below or tweet your views to @IndyNurseMag

This material is protected by MA Healthcare Ltd copyright.
See Terms and Conditions.

Comments

Name
 
Email
 
Comments
 

Please view our Terms and Conditions before leaving a comment.

Change the CAPTCHA codeSpeak the CAPTCHA code
 

Newsletter

Sign up to the newsletter

About

Independent Nurse is the professional resource for primary care and community nurses, providing clinical articles for practice nurses and prescribers.

Newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter and stay up to date with the latest nursing news.

Stay Connected

Stay social with Independent Nurse by following us on Twitter, liking us on Facebook or connecting on LinkedIn.

Archive

Need access to some of our older articles? You can view our archive, or alternatively contact us.

Contact Us

MA Healthcare Ltd.
St Jude's Church, Dulwich Road
London, SE24 0PB

Tel: +44 (0)20 7738 5454
Registered in England and Wales No. 01878373

Meet the team

Authors

Find out how to contribute to Independent Nurse here.