Stage one: Determine if the concern is serious enough to affect fitness to practise

Reference: SCR-1a

Last Updated 18/01/2021

We consider if the concern is serious enough to raise doubts on whether the nurse, midwife or nursing associate should be allowed to continue to practise as a registered professional, without us putting a restriction on how they work.

We use this to decide whether we need to investigate further.

For example, we may not need to take regulatory action for a clinical mistake, even where there has been serious harm to a patient or service-user, if there is no longer a risk to patient safety and the nurse, midwife or nursing associate has been open about what went wrong and can demonstrate that they have learned from it.

Our guidance on seriousness explains how decision makers at our screening stage might consider the seriousness of different kinds of concerns.

There’s further guidance about the different kinds of fitness to practise concern in our sections on misconduct, lack of competence, criminal offending, health, not having the necessary knowledge of English, or decisions by other health or social care organisations.

The guidance in our library, needs to be read alongside our NMC Guidance during the Covid-19 emergency period. We have new rules that are in force during the period of  the coronavirus emergency that are relevant to how it applies.

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