HCPC rules out additional regulation for advanced practice

The CSP has been working with the HCPC to understand its position following a decision by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) to introduce regulation for advanced practice nurses and midwives through the development of standards of proficiency for advanced level practice, alongside associated programme standards.


This followed an NMC review of advanced practice which revealed significant variation in how these roles are undertaken across the UK within nursing and midwifery. 

The NMC concluded that additional regulation for its registrants is required, given the lack of consistency in several areas, including education, training and governance processes, potentially creating a risk to the public.  

Whilst acknowledging the NMC plans, the HCPC yesterday confirmed is has no intention to introduce any change to regulation for registrants working at an advanced level of practice. 

This reaffirms the HCPC position from their advanced practice review in 2020, which concluded there was insufficient evidence to warrant additional regulation for its registrants working at this level of practice.

CSP's head of workforce and education, Abi Henderson, said ‘The NMC decision represents a significant change for nurses and midwives working at an advanced level of practice. 

The CSP is actively working to address these developments, including gaining opinions and listening to our members. 

We need to develop our understanding and consider any potential opportunity or unintended consequences for advanced practice physiotherapists across the UK, and we will be engaging widely to do so

As part of their ongoing work around advanced practice, the HCPC have said they will work with stakeholders toward a ‘common understanding of what advanced practice is’, something the CSP welcomes. 

Ash James, CSP director of practice and development, said: ‘We thank the HCPC for their clear direction to our members, some of whom have been unsure of their own potential regulatory requirements following the NMC decision. 

'We will be an active stakeholder in the HCPC work around advanced practice moving forward.’

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