The NMC’s Fitness to Practise Committee considers cases where a nurse or midwife’s fitness to practise is alleged to be impaired due to:
- lack of competence;
- a criminal conviction/caution;
- a finding by another health or social care regulator or licensing body that their fitness to practise is impaired; or
- a barring decision by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS);
The NMC’s Fitness to Practise Committee will follow a three-stage process as follows:
- Fact-Finding – the Committee will hear evidence from both parties, before deciding whether the allegations have been proven or not. If the allegations are found to be proven, the Committee will then move to the second stage, to consider misconduct and impairment.
- Misconduct and Impairment – the Committee will consider if the factual allegations against the registrant which have been found proven amount to misconduct. If so, they will then move on to decide whether the registrant’s fitness to practise is impaired. Essentially this involves the Committee deciding whether action needs to be taken against the registrant’s registration. If the Committee decides that the registrant’s fitness to practise is impaired, then they will move on to the third stage; sanctions.
- Sanctions – the Committee will refer to the NMC’s Indicative Sanction Guidance, which provides guidance to the Committee as to the appropriate sanction; although the Committee retains a wide discretion.
If sanctions are found to be the appropriate course of action, the Committee will choose one of the following:
- A caution (for a specified period between one and five years);
- Conditions (for a specified period up to three years);
- Suspension of the nurse or midwife’s registration (for up to one year);
- Strike off the nurse or midwife from the register.
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