November is the first anniversary of new rules governing registration and fees with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), which make it more important than every that nursing and midwifery UNISON members keep both up to date
The NMC regulates nurses and midwives in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The rules, which came into force in November 2015, means that members who lapse will need to reapply for registration.
That can take up to six weeks, during which time members won’t be registered and won’t be able to practice as a nurse or midwife.
Continuing to work as a nurse or midwife while not on the NMC register contravenes the code of professional standards, and is illegal.
Before last year’s a short grace and favour period, which meant if a nurse or midwife missed their payment, the matter could be resolved quickly and easily.
As that has now been removed in law, it is essential that members pay their fees in enough time to make sure they not risk their professional registration.
If payments are missed and members lose their registration, this could mean their employer will ‘downband’ or suspend them from work until they are readmitted onto the register.
The easiest way to maintain registration is through an NMC online account and by paying fees by quarterly direct debit.
If any member does find their registration has lapsed, or has difficulty in reapplying, they should contact their local UNISON rep for help and advice.