The Code

Professional standards of practice and behaviour for nurses, midwives and nursing associates

We know that this is an extremely challenging time for the professionals on our register.

Our Code and Standards continue to support you by providing key principles you should follow, alongside the ethical frameworks that normally guide your practice.

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The Code presents the professional standards that nurses, midwives and nursing associates must uphold in order to be registered to practise in the UK.

It’s structured around four themes – prioritise people, practise effectively, preserve safety and promote professionalism and trust.

Each section contains a series of statements that taken together signify what good nursing and midwifery practice looks like.

You’ll see that we’ve changed the look of the Code. This is in line with some changes we’ve made to our visual identity to be more accessible, modern and to help us communicate better with you. Importantly, the content of the Code hasn’t changed, so you can continue to use your existing copy if you’ve already printed it. 

Guidance and supporting information

Our guidance covers some important things to consider - like using social media responsibly and what to do if you ever need to raise a concern.

We've also published some additional information on topics that may come up throughout your career:

Caring with Confidence: The Code in Action

Our core role is to regulate, and to ensure we regulate as well as possible, we proactively support our professions.

This means creating resources that are useful throughout your career as a nurse, midwife or nursing associate, helping you to deliver our standards and address future challenges.

Caring with Confidence is a series of bite-sized animations about key aspects of your role as a nursing or midwifery professional, and how the Code can support you. Please share the series with your colleagues. 

What the Code means for different groups

The Code is useful for everyone who cares about good nursing and midwifery.

We've produced some resources to explain what the Code means for you and what you should expect.

Patients and members of the public


Previous versions of the Code

These versions are only available for reference.

2015 version of the Code (Cymraeg) - valid until 10 October 2018

2008 version of the Code - valid until 31 March 2015