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Serious concerns which are more difficult to put right

Reference: FTP-3a

Last Updated 10/01/2020

A small number of concerns are so serious that it may be less easy for the nurse or midwife to put right the conduct, the problems in their practice, or the aspect of their attitude which led to the incidents happening.

In cases like this, we will be keen to hear from the nurse or midwife if they have reflected on the concerns and taken opportunities to show insight into what happened. Because concerns of this nature, when they aren’t put right, are likely to lead to restrictive regulatory action, if we don’t hear from the nurse or midwife we will usually focus on preparing the case for the Fitness to Practise Committee at the earliest possible opportunity.

We will need to do this where the evidence shows that the nurse or midwife is responsible for:

  • breaching the professional duty of candour to be open and honest when things go wrong, including covering up, falsifying records, obstructing, victimising or hindering a colleague or member of staff or patient who wants to raise a concern, encouraging others not to tell the truth, or otherwise contributing to a culture which suppresses openness about the safety of care

  • sexual assault, relationships with patients in breach of guidance on clear sexual boundaries, and accessing, viewing, or other involvement in child pornography

  • deliberately causing harm to patients

  • deliberately using false qualifications or giving a false picture of employment history which hides clinical incidents in the past, not telling employers that their right to practise has been restricted or suspended, practising or trying to practise in breach of restrictions or suspension imposed by us

  • exploiting patients or abusing the position of a registered nurse or midwife for financial or personal gain

  • being directly responsible (such as through management of a service or setting) for exposing patients or service users to harm or neglect, especially where the evidence shows the nurse or midwife putting their own priorities, or those of the organisation they work for, before their professional duty to ensure patient safety and dignity

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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