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Revised Code for nurses and midwives published

8 January 2015

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has today published a revised Code which places public expectations at the heart of good nursing and midwifery practice. 

The Code will be sent to all nurses and midwives before it becomes effective on 31 March 2015. 

Jackie Smith, NMC Chief Executive and Registrar, said:

“The Code sets out the professional standards for nurses and midwives. When someone joins the NMC’s register, they are committing to uphold these standards when they practice.”

“The Code will strike a chord with the nurses and midwives who already demonstrate these principles in their practice. It will put patients at the heart of practice, and will help us to protect the public better.”

The revised Code builds on the content of the current version, which was published in 2008. Jackie Smith continued: 

“Public expectations of care have changed radically since the Code was last reviewed in 2008. It is essential that the Code reflects patients’ needs, modern healthcare practice and the recommendations of reviews such as the Francis Inquiry. 

The Code has been written with the input of many patients, carers, nurses and midwives. It is shaped around four statements, which state that good nurses and midwives will: 

  • Prioritise people
  • Practise effectively
  • Preserve safety
  • Promote professionalism and trust

The Code will be central to revalidation, which is a series of three yearly checks that the NMC is introducing at the end of 2015.



Notes for editors

1.   The Nursing and Midwifery Council exists to protect the public. We do this by ensuring that only those who meet our requirements are allowed to practise as a nurse or midwife in the UK. We take action if concerns are raised about whether a nurse or midwife is fit to practise.

2.   There are 686,002 nurses and midwives on the NMC’s register.

3.   For media enquiries, please contact Ann Brown or Hannah Schraer at or on 020 7681 5649/5936.