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Nursing and Midwifery

Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC)Standards

For the past two years the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) have been developing updated standards with input from stakeholders across the UK. Consultation of the draft standards took place during the summer of 2017 and the new standards were published by the NMC on 17 May 2018.

There will be a 'Once for Scotland’ approach to the implementation of the new standards.

The Scottish Future Nurse and Midwife Programme Board has been established . Professor Fiona McQueen is chairing the group and there is/will be representation from the NMC Thought Leadership Group, Council of Deans, Scottish Executive Nurse Directors (SEND), Strategic Group for Practice Learning (SGPL), Scottish Care, Scottish Collaboration for the Enhancement of Pre-registration Nursing (SCEPRN) Group, NHS Education for Scotland, Royal College of Nursing and Royal College of Midwives. 

The group has a dual purpose:

(i) to provide strategic oversight, direction and governance to the implementation of the NMC Standards of Proficiency for the registered nurse/forthcoming pre-registration midwifery, Standards for Education and Training and

(ii) to consider the future nurse role in its entirety in Scotland. There was an appeal from the group membership for a ‘Once for Scotland’ approach in relation to the new standards with a request that all universities go for approval in 2020 to enable adequate time to prepare learning environments for the changes.

New Standards for Nurses

The new standards of proficiency represent the skills, knowledge and attributes all nurses must demonstrate.

The new standards for nurses incorporating are now published and available at


Capture  Standards of proficiency for registered nurses

Capture 1  Standards framework for nursing and midwifery education

Capture 2  Standards for student supervision and assessment

Capture 3  Standards for pre-registration nursing programmes


New Standards for Prescribers

In order to prescribe medicinal products, nurses and midwives must have recorded their prescriber qualification on the NMC register. There are two types of nurse or midwife prescribers. Community nurse or midwife prescribers; and independent and supplementary nurse or midwife prescribers.

The standards set out how nurses and midwives can achieve prescriber status, how prescribing programmes are run and what constitutes safe and effective prescribing practice.

The new standards for prescribers are now published and are available at