Supervision & Non-medical prescribing (NMP)
The new NMC Prescribing Standards state that the new assessor and supervisor roles should be implemented within Non-Medical Prescribing (NMP) programmes, as with the undergraduate curricula. However, the NMC are also expected to issue further information specifically relating to NMP programmes. They have indicated that this is likely to be multi-professional in nature. It might therefore adopt Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) guidance, as they have in with the RPS (2016) Competency Framework for all Prescribers.
Whilst awaiting further information, in order to ensure clarity and quality, we as a University have decided that Assessors for nurses and midwives must either be a Designated Medical Practitioner or on the same part of the register as the nurse or midwife they are assessing. Additionally, they must of course be an independent and supplementary non-medical prescriber.
The GPhC has also issued new prescribing standards and are adopting the role of Designated Prescribing Practitioner (DPPs) for those who support and assess pharmacist NMP students. This role was previously only undertaken by DMPs. Therefore, we are referring to all DMPs, DPPs and healthcare professionals who assess NMP students in clinical practice as Assessors.
Your role as a supervisor will be to liaise closely with both NMP students and their Assessors, supporting the learning and assessment process. Practice supervisors must be health-care professionals currently registered with the NMC, GMC, GPhC or HCPC. Health and social care workers who are not registered with a professional body cannot be practice supervisors. However, others may feed into the overall educational process, such as healthcare assistants and teachers.
As a practice supervisor, you may not be required to undertake ‘formal’ training, although you should be suitably prepared for undertaking this role. For example, you may already be highly trained and experienced in supporting students.
You must feel confident that you fully understand the learning outcomes that the student is trying to achieve, and only provide evidence around student competence if you possess the appropriate and up-to-date knowledge and skills to support an NMP student.
If you are concerned a student is not making steady progress, or you have concerns about unsafe practice you should immediately arrange a meeting between yourself, the Assessor, the personal tutor and the student. It is our intention to support students in practice so as to enable them to become competent and safe prescribers.
You are welcome to contact us for a copy of the NMP Assessor Handbook, which contains more information about NMP student assessment in Practice. This information is also be available through the Universities' Mentor Centre: