Revalidation – what is it and why does it matter?

Revalidation is the way that all registered nurses maintain safe and effective practice.

We all want to provide the best care for our patients and revalidation is one way that we can demonstrate that we are keeping ourselves up to date, developing new skills and providing excellent care. It is also essential that we meet the revalidation requirements as if we do not, we are not able to practice legally as a registered nurse.

So it is crucial that we know what the requirements are, know when we will next need to revalidate and prepare ourselves to meet the requirements in a timely manner.

What is required?

Every registered nurse has to revalidate every 3 years. It is mandatory requirement. You can find out when your next revalidation date is online at the NMC website Find out your revalidation date – The Nursing and Midwifery Council (nmc.org.uk)

You must have undertaken over the previous 3 year period since last revalidation, and have the evidence to support:

  • 450 practice hours
  • 35 hours of continuing professional development
  • 5 pieces of practice related feedback
  • 5 written reflective accounts
  • A reflective discussion
  • Declaration as to your health and character
  • Evidence of professional indemnity arrangement
  • Confirmation by another registered nurse
  • Click on practice hours, CPD, practice related feedback and reflective accounts to find the NMC templates and examples of evidence
  • Know when your next revalidation date is
  • Ensure the NMC have your up to date contact details so that you will receive email reminders as the date for revalidation gets closer
  • Familiarise yourself with the requirements, documents and templates
  • Begin a folder with examples of evidence – patient or colleague feedback, certificates from training courses, reflective accounts
  • Keep a log of continuing professional development hours so that you can see whether you are on track to meet the requirements within the 3 year period
  • Practise writing reflective accounts and ask colleagues to read them so that you know what you are producing is suitable as evidence.

The reflective discussion must take place with another registered nurse or midwife who is currently active on the NMC register. They do not have to be your manager, although they can be if you choose, and you do not need to work with them on a daily basis.

Ideally the discussion should take place face to face, but it can be on a video conference/Zoom/ Teams meeting or similar if necessary. The aim of the reflective discussion is for you to discuss the range of evidence that you have collated and how this relates to your practice. You may also discuss any development needs you have identified as a result of your revalidation activity.

It is mandatory that you use the reflective discussion template provided by the NMC which can be accessed here https://www.nmc.org.uk/globalassets/sitedocuments/revalidation/reflective-discussion-form.doc

You are required to get confirmation of your revalidation by a third party. If they are a member of the NMC register, this can be the same person who you have your reflective discussion with. The confirmer does not have to be a nurse on the NMC register however, but has to be a regulated healthcare professional. It is usual that the confirmer is your line manager, but this is not necessary as long as they are able to review your evidence and can confirm that they believe that the evidence and the declarations on your documentation are valid and meet revalidation requirements.

It is mandatory that you use the confirmation template provided by the MNC which can be accessed here

Nursing and Midwifery Council: https://www.nmc.org.uk/revalidation/

Royal College of Nursing : https://www.rcn.org.uk/professional-development/revalidation

YouTube video links: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mcAn6MrSBDk&list=PLZClsKAF87OtMMbcFZAPdldU6k0n3X6dX

You are required to have completed 450 hours of practice in the 3 year period between each revalidation.

Practice hours are the time spent caring for patients directly, leading or managing a team in your role as a nurse, teaching others or influencing policy. It is the hours you spent working where you used your nursing knowledge and experience. It does not just mean direct clinical patient care.

If you have a single contract, you should easily be able to meet this requirement as most routine contracts would constitute at least 450 hours in a 3 year period. But if you have had a break in your employment, are a member of agency staff who does not work consistently, or have more than one contract, you should keep a record of your practice hours to ensure that you have done sufficient to be able to revalidate.

The practice hours template log can be found here https://www.nmc.org.uk/globalassets/sitedocuments/revalidation/practice-hours-log.doc

You are required to have undertaken 35 hours of continuing professional development (CPD). At least 20 hours of this has to be participatory learning. Participatory learning means that during the activity you interacted with one or more other people. They do not have to be nurses or health professionals, but you should be able to relate the learning back to your nursing practice.

Examples of participatory learning are:

  • Presenting a poster at a conference eg. UK Kidney week
  • Doing an on-line workshop eg. leadership skills, presenting virtually,
  • Attending an ANNUK or UK Kidney Association virtual webinar
  • Attending an update on how to use a piece of equipment or support a group of patients eg. an update on supporting patients having nocturnal home haemodialysis, learning how to use a new peritoneal dialysis machine
  • Attending a research study investigator meeting
  • Participation in a professional Twitter chat
  • Attending on line modules for a university course
  • Attending a face to face or virtual conference eg UK Kidney Week, ANNUK annual conference 
  • Participation in the ANNUK lead nurse WhattsApp group chat

Examples of other CPD

  • Completing on-line modules on eLearning for Health or RCNi
  • Undertaking on-line consent training
  • Completing Good Clinical Practice research training

Remember!! Mandatory training such as fire or health and safety training cannot be included in your CPD hours, but training which is essential for your specific role can be. Therefore, training on dialysis can be included even though it is essential for your role because not every nurse would be required to do that – it is specific to your particular role.

And don’t forget to do a structured reflection for any CPD which you undertake. That way you are meeting two of the revalidation requirements at once!! See the reflective accounts page for more information on how to do a structured reflection.

The continuing professional development template log can be found here https://www.nmc.org.uk/globalassets/sitedocuments/revalidation/cpd-log.doc

For upcoming ANNUK and renal related CPD opportunities see our calendar of events here

You are required to show evidence of 5 pieces of practice related feedback in the 3 years since you last revalidated or joined the register.

These can come from a range of colleagues – they do not have to be registered nurses or health professionals. Feedback can also be obtained from patients, carers or service users. Feedback can be formal or informal, but you must be able to provide some evidence.

Examples of feedback might be:

  • A thankyou letter from a patient or carer which names you, but this would need to be anonymised prior to use as evidence
  • 360 degree feedback results and comments
  • Appraisal feedback from your manager or team leader
  • You can ask your manager to approach others for feedback on your work on your behalf and anonymise it for you prior to you seeing it
  • Feedback from students who you have worked with
  • Feedback as part of a complaint or serious event review

Remember!! Feedback does not all have to be good, but if it highlights an area where you could develop your practice, then consider completing a reflective account of this incident to show your learning. You may even want to link it to CPD which you have undertaken as a result. You can then meet a number of the revalidation requirements at once. See the reflective accounts page to give more information on how to undertake a structured reflection and to find a useful template.

If feedback is for your team or group, you must be very clear about how you contributed to the feedback, and also how it has influenced your practice moving forward. In this case, it is even more

important to do a structured reflection so that your verifier can understand how the feedback relates to your practice and what you have learnt from it.

Practice related feedback template log can be accessed here https://www.nmc.org.uk/globalassets/sitedocuments/revalidation/practice-related-feedback-log.doc 

You are required to have a minimum of 5 written reflective accounts produced in the 3 years since you last validated or joined the register. These can be reflections on some CPD which you have undertaken, a piece of feedback on your practice, or another practice related event or experience.

There are a number of reflective models which are available and with which you may be familiar, but the NMC have produced a template which you are required to use for your revalidation reflections. This mandatory template can be accessed here https://www.nmc.org.uk/globalassets/sitedocuments/revalidation/reflective-accounts-form.doc

A structured reflection is taking the time to consider an experience or event and plan how you might respond differently in the future in order to improve the outcome. This is usually done by identifying the learning from the event and considering how you would apply that in the future to enhance your practice. You do not only need to reflect on challenging events though. You can reflect on an episode of CPD and consider what you have learnt and how you will apply that learning in practice. Or you can reflect on a piece of positive feedback and recognise what you have done well. Your learning may be that you recognise these elements as some of you strengths and you are going to try to utilise them more in your practice, or assist others to develop these skills.

For examples of a structured reflection, click here.

Reflective account: Positive carer feedback

Reflective account: Peritoneal dialysis study day

Revalidation – Downloads

Reflective account: Positive carer feedback
Reflective account: Peritoneal dialysis study day