NMC highlights key achievements during an unprecedented year

Published on 21 July 2021

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We have today published our Annual Report and Accounts, Annual Fitness to Practise (FtP) Report and our annual revalidation and equality and diversity data for 2020-2021 which outline our key achievements in an unprecedented year for everyone in health and care.

A year like no other

2020-2021 has been a year like no other. The Covid-19 pandemic has had a major impact on the professionals on our register, our partners and wider society. It has also impacted our work here at the NMC.

This year’s reports outline the work we’ve delivered in the first year of our new corporate strategy and how we quickly refocused our efforts at the start of the year on a new set of priorities to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Highlights of this year’s work outlined in our annual report include:

  • Established and developed a temporary register for returning and overseas professionals to enable them to contribute safely to the Covid-19 response.
  • Producing emergency education and recovery standards to enable nursing and midwifery education to continue, while allowing students to contribute to the Covid-19 response.
  • In coproduction with our partners, developing draft post-registration education standards for consultation, building on ambitions for community and public health nursing.
  • Becoming the first professional health and care regulator to sign up to the NHS Workforce Race Equality Standard. We also published our disability and ethnicity pay gap reports alongside the annual gender pay gap report.
  • Launching the next phase of our Ambitious for Change research to better understand the experiences of people with protected characteristics involved in our processes.

Fitness to practise report

Like many areas of our work, the Covid-19 pandemic had a big impact on fitness to practise, increasing the backlog of cases we identified last year. Tackling the backlog is our top priority in the coming months, as well as other priority areas.

Highlights of this year’s work outlined in our fitness to practise annual report include:

  • Increasing our resources dedicated to progressing cases, as well as improving our processes, decision making and supporting information for those involved in fitness to practise.
  • Developing a new web-based resource for employers to support them to act first to deal with concerns about professionals, enabling us to focus on only the most serious cases.
  • Developing a new, more consistent approach to taking account of the context in which an individual is working when we look at concerns raised with us about their practise.
  • Improving accessibility and flexibility by conducting many of our hearings virtually, as well holding some in person.

Andrea Sutcliffe CBE, Chief Executive and Registrar of the NMC, said:

“We’ve all been inspired by the extraordinary contribution that nurses, midwives and nursing associates have made during the national response to Covid-19. In the most challenging circumstances, they have provided the safe, effective, and kind care that has undoubtedly saved many lives.

“Despite the challenges of the past twelve months I’m also extremely proud of the part the NMC has played in the response to Covid-19 and of the progress we’ve made against our priorities.

“While the pandemic has brought about longer term challenges for the NMC, particularly in fitness to practise, we’re absolutely committed to tackling these challenges head on.

“As we look to the years ahead, and to delivering on our 2020-2025 strategy, it is crucial that we continue to work collaboratively and build on the lessons, experiences and achievements of the past twelve months.

Sir David Warren, Chair of the NMC, said:

“I am proud to join the NMC at such a key moment and the achievements of the past twelve months of both the professions that we regulate and the NMC itself have been central to the UK’s response to Covid-19 pandemic.

“While the effects of Covid-19 will be felt for some time, I look forward to building on the work of the past year as we move forward with a renewed commitment to regulating well, supporting our professions and influencing positive change in health and care.”



Our 2020-2025 Strategy sets out how we aim to support the delivery of safe, effective and kind nursing and midwifery care.

Our 2021-2022 corporate plan gives more detail of our priorities for the year ahead.

We published our annual registration data report in May, showing over 15,000 more nurses, midwives and nursing associates are now registered with the NMC

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