I’d like to take the opportunity to use this Blog to discuss the role of the NES (NHS Education for Scotland) Practice Educator and reflect on some of the projects that I have been involved in during my time working within NHS Dumfries and Galloway. I will also consider the fast approaching issue of NMC Revalidation and how nurses and midwives can start preparing for this now.
I came to the post of NES Practice Educator (PE) for NHS Dumfries and Galloway from a varied career as a Mental Health Nurse with NHS Ayrshire & Arran (and a brief detour to the FE Sector). Working principally in Community Mental Health, I enjoyed roles in Adult CMHT, CAMHS and Addictions Nursing. As a Senior Charge Nurse and Team Leader professional development was always crucially important: both personally and within the culture of teams I worked in. The PE role with NES offered a unique opportunity to focus exclusively on this area and support a wide range of nurses and midwives to access academically robust, evidence based person centred resources which inform their practice in a meaningful way.
As PE for NHS D&G I am part of a National network of 17 hosted in NHS Boards across Scotland. The role enhances the existing practice education network at a local, regional and national level. We support the continuing professional development of nurses and midwives in care giving roles by bringing educational resources closer to practice and act as a conduit between NES and the Boards. The role has a strong strategic remit as well as hands on facilitation of learning sessions.
My post is part-time with core working days of Monday and Tuesday. I work closely with the Practice Education Facilitators, Practice & Development Skills Facilitator Bill Irving and AHP Practice Education Lead Kathy Banford. My Professional Lead with the Board is Alice Wilson AND. A large part of my focus since coming into post has centred on developing a network of contacts throughout the board and in particular the promotion of Effective Practitioner (EP – a comprehensive online CPD resource) and ePortfolio (eP – the electronic personal professional portfolio) across a wide range of clinical and geographical settings. There has been a significant uptake of this work from Mental Health, Midwifery some of the Community Nursing teams and Cottage Hospitals and within the Acute Sector, Renal Services and Day Surgery. I particularly enjoyed filming a videocast for inclusion on the Effective Practitioner website with Learning Disability Champion Emma Groves from Day Surgery where she shared the transformational effect participation in the LD Champ course had on her practice. Despite the significant challenges Nurses and Midwives face in balancing clinical demands with accessing CPD my experience working in these areas has demonstrated that there is an important role for time efficient and well designed resources such as EP and eP in supporting and recording professional development activities.
With the details of NMC Revalidation currently being finalised the effective maintenance of a professional portfolio of robust CPD activity has never been more important for Nurses and Midwives. The Revalidation model is expected to be with is in January 2014 with early implementers going live from early 2015.
Key principles of the new model include:
- Improve public protection.
- Increase public confidence in nurses and midwives by allowing them to demonstrate that they are always fit to do their work.
- Ensure nurses and midwives on the register continue to meet NMC standards.
- Enable nurses and midwives to be accountable for demonstrating their continuing fitness to practise.
- Promoting a culture of professionalism and accountability through ongoing reflection on the Code and standards.
Revalidation will require every nurse and midwife to confirm that they:
- Continue to remain fit to practise by meeting the principles of the revised Code
- Have completed the required hours of practice and learning activity through Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
- Have used feedback to review and improve the way they work.
- Have received confirmation from someone well placed to comment on their continuing fitness to practise.
I would encourage all interested parties to participate in with online consultation on the proposed revalidation model which runs till 31/3/14 details here: http://www.nmc-uk.org/Get-involved/Consultations/Consultation-on-revalidation-and-the-revised-Code/CPD
In Strategic Aim 1, Setting the Direction, the Scottish Government propose that we should “Work together to promote a learning culture in which development and improvement are inherent in everyday working practices. Working collaboratively with partners to promote educational technology and other methods which improve flexibility and access and suit a range of learning styles and preferences” This strongly advocates the importance of embracing time efficient use of high quality learning resources e.g.
Effective Practitioner includes:
Template for CPD – Self Assessment and Action Planning tools, wide-ranging Learning Activities and Work-based learning materials and links to Knowledge Network and other resources.
Simple, intuitive, real time recording of CPD, Clinical learning, reflection and supervision.
Feedback requests: line managers, peers, patients and carers.
These resources can contribute significantly in preparing for Revalidation.
I am currently offering a range of hands on sessions introducing ePortfolio in collaboration with the PEF TEAM, these have been heavily oversubscribed and additional dates have been released.
All Sessions – 1-2 PM Seminar Rm 3 Ed Centre DGRI.
22/4, 27/5, 24/6, 22/7, 26/8, 23/9.
Additionally I am happy to deliver in your clinical area or team base. I am also happy to discuss any other aspect of professional development or use of other NES resources.
Gordon Hay is NES Practice Educator for NHS Dumfries and Galloway