Make sure your voice is heard – nursing leaders

A nurse stands with her arms folded

Four of the country’s most influential nursing figures including Professor Jane Cummings and Hilary Garratt from NHS England; Professor Lisa Baylis-Pratt of Health Education England and Ruth May of  NHS Improvement, have joined forces to support vital consultation on the future of the profession:

Throughout the summer the Nursing and Midwifery Council has been seeking views on the proposed new standards of proficiency for the registered nurse.

These standards have been written in collaboration with a range of nurses working in different settings, and at different levels of seniority, from across the UK.

The changes the Nursing and Midwifery Council are proposing will result in a radical change to nursing education. As well as impacting on our profession for years to come, the changes will also affect our relationship with learners and our role in their education and training.

The changes proposed are in response to the unique challenges we face day to day in our different places of work. The health and care landscape is changing at an unprecedented rate and it’s likely that these challenges will only become greater as the population continues to age and the need for more localised care grows.

The knowledge and skills that are required from registered nurses today are obviously very different from what was required ten years ago, and will continue to change into the future.

As a profession we are routinely working in multi-disciplinary environments and, as part of integrated teams; we are working more closely with other health and care professional colleagues. This has naturally led to an increase in the complexity of tasks nurses are now required to do, and the draft standards the Nursing and Midwifery Council have proposed aim to reflect this ever-changing environment.

This is vital work that requires all of our input and it is important that nurses respond to the consultation so the Nursing and Midwifery Council can collect a diverse range of opinions.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council wants to future proof these standards, to make them fit for now as well as for the future. This is a key consultation for you and those nurses who will work alongside you in the future, and if you haven’t done so already please take the time to respond to the consultation here.

So far there has been healthy debate around the standards and they appear to be capturing what the public will need from nurses in the future. But this is only the beginning – it is important that we are all ready for these changes and the opportunities that they can bring.

As senior leaders and nurses working in different roles and different settings, we ask that you discuss the standards in your organisations and within your teams. We also ask that education providers and practice learning environments work in partnership, and give some thought to how things might potentially work differently over the next 1 – 2 years and feed that in to the responses.

The Nursing and Midwifery Council consultation closes on the 12 September, please make sure your voice is heard and help shape the future of our profession.

This blog was co-written by:

  • Professor Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer, England
  • Ruth May, Executive Director of Nursing, NHS Improvement, Deputy Chief Nursing Officer and National Director for Infection Prevention and Control
  • Hilary Garratt, Director of Nursing, NHS England and Deputy Chief Nursing Officer, England
  • Professor Lisa Baylis-Pratt, Director of Nursing and Deputy Director of Education and Quality, Health Education England
Jane Cummings

Professor Jane Cummings is the Chief Nursing Officer for England and Executive Director at NHS England.

Jane specialised in emergency care and has held a wide variety of roles across the NHS including Director of Commissioning, Director of Nursing and Deputy Chief Executive.

In February 2004, she became the national lead for emergency care agreeing and implementing the 98% operational standard. She has also worked as the nursing advisor for emergency care. In January 2005, she was appointed as the National Implementation Director for ‘Choice’ and ‘Choose and Book’.

Jane moved to NHS North West in November 2007 where she held executive responsibility for the professional leadership of nursing, quality, performance as well as QIPP, commissioning and for a time Deputy Chief Executive Officer. In October 2011, she was appointed to the role of Chief Nurse for the North of England SHA Cluster.

She was appointed as Chief Nursing Officer for England in March 2012 and started full time in June 2012. Jane is the professional lead for all nurses and midwives in England (with the exception of public health) and published the ‘6Cs’ and ‘Compassion in Practice’ in December 2012, followed by publishing the ‘Leading Change, Adding Value’ framework in May 2016.

Jane has executive oversight of maternity, patient experience, learning disability and, in January 2016, became executive lead for Patient and Public Participation.

She was awarded Doctorates by Edge Hill University and by Bucks New University, and she is a visiting professor at Kingston University and St George’s University, London.

She is also Director and trustee for Macmillan Cancer Support and a clinical Ambassador for the Over the Wall Children’s Charity where she volunteers as a nurse providing care for children affected by serious illnesses.

Follow Jane on Twitter: @JaneMCummings.

Hilary Garratt

Hilary Garratt CBE, BSc, MSc, RGN, RHV, PGCE is the Director of Nursing in NHS England and Deputy Chief Nursing Officer for England.

Hilary leads a nursing and midwifery team in NHS England that focuses on a number of national statutory functions and professional development priority areas.

She is a registered Nurse and Health Visitor with over 30 years’ experience of working in the NHS. Hilary has held a number of director posts and a deputy chief executive post in both Commissioning and Provision and has been working at National Director level for the last four years.

From 2013 – 2017 Hilary also volunteered for BBC Children in Need and was a committee member that undertook grant making for the North of England. She is also a trustee of a charity, “Giving to Gambia” and enjoys working in the Gambia for a short time each year as a volunteer to support initiatives that improve health and wellbeing.

Hilary worked in the Calais refugee camp in 2016 and witnessed the reality of individuals, living through unimaginable trauma. She saw children being lured into the hands of criminals for want of a better life and seeing this first hand brought home the sheer importance of the NHS and other organisations across the health and care system working together to protect the most vulnerable people in society.

Hilary received a CBE in the 2017 New Year’s Honours for services to nursing, particularly her work to safeguard some of the most vulnerable people in society

Follow Hilary on Twitter: @HilaryGarratt.

Professor Lisa Bayliss-Pratt

Lisa was appointed as Chief Nurse at Health Education England (HEE) in 2012 and in this role she is responsible for leading national policy, workforce planning, and multi-professional education and training commissioning for the non-medical healthcare workforce.

Key achievements include delivering transformation of nursing education and training (Raising the Bar), the successful test site programme for the Nursing Associate role, development and piloting of pre-degree care experience for aspirant nurses and leading the ‘return to practice’ initiative.

In 2017, in addition to her Chief Nurse role, Lisa was appointed to the as Interim Regional Director for London and South East. As the Regional Director Lisa is responsible for approximately £1billion of investment in education, training and workforce development across London. Her role also includes providing support to five Sustainability and Transformation Plans within the capital.

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  1. Kassander says:

    “Make sure your voice is heard”

    “Jane, … in January 2016, became executive lead for Patient and Public Participation.
    A year ago, Ms Cumings promised the NHS England (NHSE) Board that she would ensure that a replacement for the Citizen-Gather online Patients’ Forum would be up and running in a matter of weeks.
    That would be achieved in co-ordination with Ms Anu Singh.
    One of the Non-Executive Directors of NHSE, Lord Victor Adebowale CBE, would represent the Board.
    Now, that would have helped “Make sure your voice is heard”.

    Twelve months on and Ms A Singh hasn’t been heard of and neither has the online Forum.

    What about a Progress Report from these THREE leading figures, please?