Following the challenges of Covid-19 and rising staffing shortages, nurses are coping with even more challenges in 2022. This year has already seen those in the sector hit by unprecedented fuel price rises – which is making patient visits increasingly difficult for community nurses – changes to student finance repayments and huge gaps in the availability of cancer nurses. The wellbeing crisis in staff is continuing to grow, with over half of nursing specialists reporting that they are currently sacrificing their mental health for the sake of their job.
With so many obstacles and worries, career development should be something that nurses can count on to be straightforward, worthwhile and providing real help and strength in their everyday jobs. Generate’s team of contractor management specialists, who have helped thousands of nurses around the world, share our network’s advice to help healthcare staff keep on top of their skills development and professional requirements.
What Is Nursing Revalidation and Why Is It So Important?
Every registered nurse, midwife or nursing associate must revalidate with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) every three years in order to keep practising in their field. To meet healthcare standards, professionals must complete a variety of job-related activities to develop their skills, knowledge and competencies. Amongst other requirements, nurses will need to complete 450 practice hours, 35 hours of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) activities, five pieces of practice-related feedback and five pieces of written reflection on their learnings.
The NMC states, ‘Revalidation is about promoting good practice, as well as strengthening public confidence in the nursing and midwifery professions. Revalidation helps to encourage a culture of sharing, reflection and improvement. It will provide benefits for you as a nurse, midwife or nursing associate as well as the people you care for.’
Revalidating ensures that not only are your qualifications and experience levels up to date, but that you are as knowledgeable as possible about any changes to common treatments, safeguarding measures and vital amendments to legislation and nursing practices. Healthcare specialists who continuously strive to improve their training and skills will be best placed to support their patients, families and colleagues with any challenges that arise in the near and distant future.
3 Tips to Help Nursing Professionals Revalidate
1. Make a Plan for Your Revalidation
Before you take on your new training requirements, spend time thinking about your career and your natural skills and abilities. Ask yourself:
- Where are the gaps in my current knowledge and experience?
- What challenges have I faced recently – why did I find them challenging, and what would have helped me navigate them better?
- Which areas do I want to specialise in for my career path?
- What am I most interested in and excited to learn?
Map your plan around where you most need to improve, and what you will need to move into the specialism of your choice. Tailor your research around your own personal career goals to ensure you get the most value out of your CPD, and set you up for the best success.
2. Detailed, Relevant Courses to Complete Your CPD
When it comes to your CPD, there are a wealth of training programmes and shorter online and in-person sessions to choose from. A variety of activities can be included in your CPD, including workshops, conferences, structured learning or distance learning, accredited college- or university-level training, and some research or collaborative activities. Ensure you know exactly which activities will contribute towards your CPD before you embark upon your training.
Many accredited courses cover different techniques, knowledge, skills and specialisms, such as:
- Basic life support and resuscitation
- Drug calculation and medications management
- Safeguarding for children, young adults and vulnerable people
- End of life care
- Catheterisation, venipuncture and injection administration
- Dementia intervention for cognitive & non-cognitive types
- Infection prevention and control
- Anaphylaxis and allergy awareness
- Training for workers in lone environments
- Mental health and wellbeing care.
Connect with industry bodies to find the best courses and ascertain exactly how many CPD credits and which valuable knowledge they will provide you with at this point in your career.
For those who want to overcome worries or gaps in knowledge related to the pandemic, some healthcare organisations will offer courses that address how Covid-19 changed hospital care and the role of nursing professionals. Specific courses can include how to properly apply Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), breathing and lung support equipment, vaccine administration and delivery, and lateral flow and swab testing.
Some healthcare recruitment companies and other sector suppliers also offer free e-learning courses. More theory-based online courses cover conflict resolution, diversity and inclusion, complaints handling, information governance and a wealth of topics around people, admin, finance and organisation.
3. Get Support from Your Colleagues & Professional Networks
The best people to help you through revalidation are those who have already achieved it many times. Don’t be afraid to speak with your senior colleagues and department heads to get an experienced perspective and tips you couldn’t pick up from anywhere else. Ask seasoned nurse practitioners:
- What can I expect from the training and assessment process?
- What most challenged you when you were undertaking your revalidation?
- What most surprised you, and did your expectations meet reality?
- What advice would you give to another colleague?
Your immediate colleagues, particularly those who directly manage you, will also be able to give you advice specifically to help you as an individual. Your manager or team leader will know your competencies and weaknesses as well as you do, but will be objective and will understand how your improvement areas and best assets will fit into the revalidation process, to help ensure you play to your strengths but also gain invaluable learnings.
Get the Best Support in Your Nursing Career
Generate’s payroll services include discounts for registered CPD and Diploma courses. Find out how our services could help you.
Looking to advance your healthcare career with a new job or promotion opportunity? Equip yourself with the best answers to the 5 Most Popular Questions in Nursing Job Interviews.