Playing our part: the work of graduate and registered mental health nurses. An independent review by the Foundation of Nursing Studies

Butterworth, Tony and Shaw, Theresa (2017) Playing our part: the work of graduate and registered mental health nurses. An independent review by the Foundation of Nursing Studies. Project Report. Foundation of Nursing Studies.

31667 Report-Playing-our-Part-the-work-of-graduate-and-registered-mental-health-nurses.pdf
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Playing our Part was completed early in 2017 just as the UK Prime Minister announced a call to action on mental health. The Foundation of Nursing Studies (FoNS) welcomes any renewed political focus on the mental health agenda. We believe graduate and registered mental health nurses are well placed to play a significant part in public mental health and wellbeing, and this report offers some proposals to optimise this role. It is important to note that the report focuses on the work of graduate and registered mental health nurses; in doing so and in suggesting ways of improvement, we are clear the beneficiaries must be people who experience mental illness.
This work did not set out to comment on health and social care funding or its impact on mental health frontline services, but debate and arguments on funding and poor service provision featured constantly during the course of the work.
There are significant moves to change health and social care through new workforce roles across the UK in response to mental health policies. The existing workforce must accommodate and adapt to these changes and work alongside those in the new roles. However, supervision requirements and new partnerships will need to be thought through with purpose. From the perspective of this report, it is important that workforce planners, employers and healthcare professionals do not focus on delivering numbers and creating ‘new’ workforce personnel without proper consideration of the deployment and redeployment of graduate and registered mental health nurses.
Meanwhile, the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) is undertaking a wide-ranging consultation on nursing and midwifery competencies and standards. Graduate and registered mental health nurses are concerned this could lead to a single ‘generic’ nurse registration, meaning they will lose their specialist identity. This cannot occur without new legislation so the NMC’s consultative work throughout 2017 will not change the different fields of registration. However, legislation will be needed to accommodate the new nursing associate role – now to be regulated by the NMC – so single registration could be brought forward at that point. A clear evidence base will be needed to support any move to ‘absorb’ mental health nursing in this way, 65 years after it was recognised as a specialist registration (Carr et al., 1980).
In this report the term ‘we’ is often used. To be clear, this shorthand indicates that FoNS is reporting the views of respondents and consultees with expertise in mental health services, education, research and clinical practice; the views are not necessarily those of the Foundation.
In undertaking this work, we have had to navigate the complexities of the health and social care system and professional regulation, but we hope we have cut through these to add clarity to the potential future role of graduate and registered mental health nurses. It is in this spirit of facilitating progress that FoNS is pleased to present this report.

Keywords:Mental health nursing
Subjects:B Subjects allied to Medicine > B760 Mental Health Nursing
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Health & Social Care
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ID Code:31667
Deposited On:12 Apr 2018 14:41

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