Advanced clinical practice core capabilities for nurses working within general practice settings in England

Consultation now Closed

The consultation on the advanced clinical practice core capabilities for nurses working within general practice settings in England is now closed. Many thanks the hundreds of people who took part in the process.

  • Background

    NHS England Ten Point Plan Team has commissioned the development of a new core capabilities framework for nurses working in general practice settings. The framework will describe the required skills, knowledge and behaviours relevant to advanced clinical practice and will align with the Multi-Professional Framework for Advanced Clinical Practice in England (HEE 2017).

    As defined in the HEE Multi-Professional Framework, a nurse working at an advanced clinical level will exercise autonomy and use clinical reasoning to make complex decisions in the context of uncertainty and varying levels of risk. They are accountable for their decisions.

    Over the past 15-20 years the role of the advanced nurse, often known as an advanced nurse practitioner (ANP), has evolved within both general practice and secondary care. Within general practice, nurses have played a key part in developing roles in response to practice and workforce need. Therefore, there now exists a variety of titles, varying levels of qualification/training and a wide range of competency. As such this has created confusion for nurses, fellow healthcare staff, employers, clinical supervisors and patients and this framework aims to address these concerns.

  • Purpose and scope of the framework

    A key purpose of the framework is to support development and planning of the advanced clinical level workforce, and to inform the design and delivery of education and training programmes. With a growing shortage of GPs, more complex care being delivered in primary care and an increasing patient demand, there is a huge need for more clinicians. The General Practice Forward View (2016) highlighted the need for workforce development to combat these issues. This framework is also in accordance with the NHS England ten-point action plan for General Practice Nursing1 and in particular, the deliverable to “Actively promote advanced clinical practice in order to increase the numbers of nurses in general practice working in these roles”.

    The framework will provide a standard and greater clarity on the scope of practice for nurses working at the advanced clinical practice level, within general practice settings. This will be particularly relevant to employers such as GPs and Practice Managers (e.g. for workforce planning), education providers (e.g. to inform the design and delivery of curricula) and to patients, nurses and colleagues in multi-disciplinary teams.

    1NHSE (2017), General Practice – Developing confidence, capability and capacity: A ten point action plan for General Practice Nursing

Development of the framework

Skills for Health has been commissioned to provide project management and lead on development of the framework. A steering group comprising key stakeholders is guiding the development process.

The first stage of the project focused on desk research to review existing source documents and develop the framework structure. The draft framework is now available for review as part of a wider consultation process during June.

The framework is due for completion by the Autumn 2019.

Register to be informed when Framework is published: To receive notification that the Framework has been published please follow the link below to the registration form.