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General practice nursing shoots up the agenda

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General practice advocates General practice advocates

It's funny how these things seem to happen over night. One minute general practice nursing is a forgotten backwater of the profession to all but those working in it, the next, all eyes are on primary care and practice and community nurses are hailed as the answer to all (OK, many) of the NHS's problems. Of course, the reality is not that it happened over night, but that many dedicated practice and community nurses have been working hard to raise awareness of primary care nursing so that it is seen as a specialty in its own right, and a viable career option for recently qualified nurses and nursing students.

The collective voice has been heard. Not only has Simon Stevens' report into the viability of the NHS over the next five years, recognised primary care nursing and the extended role it can play in managing the health of the nation, but three strategic appointments across NHS England, the CQC and HEE, are a clear commitment to the practice nursing workforce.

These three nurses can now help make a structured career pathway, clearer routes in, and improved education a reality. Who knows, we might even see the long-awaited practice nursing vision this side of Christmas.

Now that practice and community nursing has risen up the professional agenda, every nurse must help raise its profile with the public. This is best achieved by nurses in primary care taking pride in and talking about their work. Another way of course is social media. The DH is leading a week of online action from 17 November, focused on children's and carers' health. This is an opportunity to shout about the great work you do and raise the visibility around how primary care nurses directly impact public health.

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

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