NMC comments on the PSA initial stages audit

31 March 2014

Chief Executive and Registrar of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), Jackie Smith, said: 

“We welcome the publication of the 2013 initial stages audit into our fitness to practise processes and we are pleased that the Professional Standards Authority (PSA) has found that there are no public protection issues arising from the decisions to close the 81 cases from the audit period.

“We are pleased that the PSA highlight the substantial progress across the early stages of the fitness to practise process and comment positively on areas of improvement since the start of our improvement plan in early 2011.

“We acknowledge the PSA’s findings in relation to our handling of 19* cases relating to Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust**. We are pleased that the PSA had no concerns with the two cases closed within the audit period, and we are confident that changes made since the other 17 cases were opened and closed have addressed the issues raised.

“We note the recommendations made by the PSA with regards to the NMC’s use of Voluntary Removal (VR) and we have already committed to a review of our process and guidance around VR to pick up both the PSA’s comments and learning from our quality assurance checks. 

“In conclusion, we know that there is still more we need to do. However, it recognises the progress we have made and confirms the commitment we made to improving performance.”



Notes for editors

1.   We are the nursing and midwifery regulator for England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Islands. We exist to safeguard the health and wellbeing of the public. We set standards of education, training, conduct and performance for nurses and midwives, and hold the register of those who have qualified and meet those standards. We provide guidance to help nurses and midwives keep their skills and knowledge up to date and uphold our professional standards. We have clear and transparent processes to investigate and deal with nurses and midwives who fall short of our standards.

2.   *Relates to cases opened between 2008 and 2010.

3.   **We received 56 referrals relating to 55 people since the date of the first Francis inquiry. This figure includes all Mid-Staffs referrals since the first Francis report. Of those, 14 reached a substantive hearing: 

3.1   Five were struck off the NMC register

3.2   One received a 12 month suspension order

3.3   One received a 12 month conditions of practise order

3.4   One received a three caution order

3.5   One received a two-year caution order

3.6   Four cases resulted in no impairment/case to answer and no sanction 

4.   The NMC has now concluded all of its cases relating to Mid Staffordshire.

5.   For media enquiries, please contact Madeleine Childs at madeleine.childs@nmc-uk.org or on 020 7681 5936.