Revised NMC code

By Julie Griffiths on 29 January 2015 NMC - Nursing and Midwifery Council

The NMC has published a revised code for midwives and nurses.

The Code: professional standards of practice and behaviour for nurses and midwives will be sent to all midwives and nurses before it comes into effect on 31 March this year.

The RCM has welcomed the revised code, which was informed by extensive consultations with members and has encompassed recommendations of recent reports, such as the Francis review.

RCM director for midwifery Louise Silverton said the revisions were important.

‘We particularly welcome the code’s updated sections on the professional duty of candour and social media and networking sites. We also welcome the code’s greater emphasis on compassionate care, teamwork and raising concerns about poor care,’ she said.

The code will also form an important part of the processes for revalidation, which aims to improve public protection and reinforce good practice, and is due to be introduced at the end of 2015.

The conduct aspects of the code will also apply to student midwives in training.

The code provides mothers and service-users with a measure of what they can expect in terms of professional care from midwives and nurses and provides a benchmark against which they can provide feedback regarding the care they receive.

The revised code builds on the content of the current version, which was published in 2008.

Jackie Smith, chief executive and registrar of the NMC, said: ‘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 shaped around four statements, which state that good nurses and midwives will: prioritise people, practise effectively, preserve safety and promote professionalism and trust.

Louise said: ‘We hope the new and revised measures will help improve care for mothers, babies and families.’  

Click here to read the revised code.