UNISON makes progress on preceptorships

Preceptorship campaign – March 2022 update

Nurses and students have told us how challenging the transition into their first registered roles are. This has been made worse by the Covid-19 pandemic and the pressures on health and social care.

UNISON has been working together with the Florence Nightingale Foundation and the Nursing Times to campaign for consistent access to high quality preceptorships for all nurses that support them to develop and thrive in their first roles.

Our campaign goals are:

  • Protected time for preceptorship and supervision, for both preceptors and preceptees, with proper investment to make sure this happens in practice
  • Consistent access to preceptorship programmes which give support during the transition to qualified practice, and provide time and space for reflective practice and clinical supervision
  • Debate and discussion around preceptorships to build the evidence base and justification for investment

There have been important developments from our campaign so far:

  • We launched and undertook a survey on preceptorship, which over 5000 nurses responded to from all parts of the UK. We’ve used the findings to call for more support for NRNs and have helped to inform ongoing work on preceptorship in England and Cymru/Wales. We fed back to groups like the NHS Community Nursing Group in England and networks of hospices.
  • We’ve brought together organisations like the NHS, the NMC, universities and unions to discuss and share information and developments in preceptorship. Much good work is being undertaken by different organisations and we’re trying to share this and promote good practice.
  • Newly registered nurses and midwives in England have been given access to quality online support, supported by the Florence Nightingale Foundation, to help them adjust and cope as they transition into autonomous practice. Newly registered nurses and midwives can sign up here
  • We’ve published and widely shared views, experiences and perspectives on preceptorship to start debate and discussion.

We will continue to campaign for the consistent, high-quality preceptorships that our survey shows are needed more than ever.

We plan to build on our survey work with further information gathering and will be looking to work with organisations across the UK to support the improvement of preceptorship offers for all nurses.

We will share more information with branches and regions when we have it.