Should a registered nurse by expected to know how to conduct a standard eye test?

Ms J Ellison made this Freedom of Information request to Nursing and Midwifery Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was successful.

Dear Nursing and Midwifery Council,

I have attempted to have this question answered by your New Referrals team, but I have not received so much as an acknowledgement, which is regrettable.

I would like some information regarding expected standard of expertise of registered nurses.

I have been assessed for Personal Independence Payment by a registered nurse and had my case reviewed by a second registered nurse/ Both nurses are employed by ATOS.

It is apparent that the first nurse did not know how to conduct a visual acuity test correctly and the second nurse was unable to interpret my visual acuity score from a Certificate of Visual Impairment.

I understand from information gained from you website, that although nurse training curricula may vary, each accredited course should include some core areas.

Can you advise whether the ability to conduct a standard eye test using a Snellen chart would be a core training requirement for all nurses? I can confirm that the nurses were first registered in 2006 and 2005 respectively.

Yours faithfully,

Ms J Ellison

Foi & Dpa Request, Nursing and Midwifery Council

We acknowledge receipt of your freedom of information/data protection
request.

 

The statutory timeframe for responses are:

 

o Freedom of Information requests - 20 working days;
o Data Protection requests - 40 (calendar) days.

 

If you need the information in an alternative format, we will do all we
reasonably can to help.

 

The Nursing and Midwifery Council is now using the email and file
encryption service - Egress Switch to secure sensitive information.
[1]http://www.egress.com/

 

Thank you.

 

Nursing and Midwifery Council

23 Portland Place London W1B 1PZ

 

show quoted sections

Ms J Ellison left an annotation ()

Dear Ms Ellison

Thank you for contacting the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

In response to your query, the education standards set by the NMC do not go into that level of detail and do not state the ability to conduct a particular type of test (in this case an eye test using a Snellen chart) as being a core requirement of the training of all nurses, nor did they do so at the time that the nurses in question were registered.

The NMC’s Education and Standards department referred me to the 2000 version of our standards for pre-registration nursing education and noted that it covers such issues at a very high level by referring to nurses being able to identify care needs based on the assessment of a patient or client; by ensuring that current research findings and other evidence are incorporated into practice; and by identifying, collecting and evaluating information to justify the effective utilisation of resources. However it does not go into detail as to how this should be done or what methods should be used as this would vary from case to case and patient to patient.

If you are concerned about the fitness to practise of a nurse and wish to make a Fitness to Practise referral, please would you complete the attached form and email to newreferals@nmc-uk.org.

For more information about this process we would recommend consulting the following page on our website:

https://www.nmc.org.uk/concerns-nurses-m...

I hope this information helps.

Yours sincerely,

Tom Macgregor

Data Processing Officer

Fitness to Practise
020 7681 5744

Nursing and Midwifery Council

1st Floor

1 Kemble Street

London WC2B 4AN

DX 37970 Kingsway

www.nmc.org.uk
020 7580 3410 (fax)

020 7462 5800 (Switchboard)

Ms J Ellison left an annotation ()

As the standard test for visual acuity is carried out via eye charts using the Snellen scale, I will take this as a "yes" then

William Pounder, Nursing and Midwifery Council

FOI/2017/041

 

[1][FOI #384631 email]

 

Dear Ms Ellison,

 

Thank you for your request for information from the Nursing and Midwifery
Council [NMC]. Your request was received on 26 January 2017 and dealt with
under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 [FOIA].

 

You asked

 

I have attempted to have this question answered by your New Referrals
team, but I have not received so much as an acknowledgement, which is
regrettable.

 

I would like some information regarding expected standard of expertise of
registered nurses.

 

I have been assessed for Personal Independence Payment by a registered
nurse and had my case reviewed by a second registered nurse/ Both nurses
are employed by ATOS.

 

It is apparent that the first nurse did not know how to conduct a visual
acuity test correctly and the second nurse was unable to interpret my
visual acuity score from a Certificate of Visual Impairment.

 

I understand from information gained from you website, that although nurse
training curricula may vary, each accredited course should include some
core areas.

 

Can you advise whether the ability to conduct a standard eye test using a
Snellen chart would be a core training requirement for all nurses? I can
confirm that the nurses were first registered in 2006 and 2005
respectively.

 

Our response

 

The NMC can confirm the information you have requested about the
competencies for registered nurses  is readily available and  in the
public domain. Such information is therefore exempt from disclosure under
section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act.

 

The information that you require can be found by clicking on the following
link:

[2]https://www.nmc.org.uk/standards/additio...

 

Section 21 of FOIA states that Information which is reasonably accessible
to the applicant by other means is exempt from disclosure. As the
information can be accessed by clicking on the link above , the NMC have
concluded that such information is reasonably accessible to you.   

 

Please see the annex below for further information on section 21.

 

Additionally, the education standards set by the NMC do not go into the
level of details as specified in your request and do not state the ability
to conduct a particular type of test (in this case an eye test using a
Snellen chart) as being a core requirement of the training of all nurses,
nor did they do so at the time that the nurses in question were
registered.

 

The NMC’s Education and Standards department referred you to the 2000
version of our standards for pre-registration nursing education and noted
that it covers such issues at a very high level . For example, by
referring to nurses being able to identify care needs based on the
assessment of a patient or client; by ensuring that current research
findings and other evidence are incorporated into practice; and by
identifying, collecting and evaluating information to justify the
effective utilisation of resources. However it does not go into detail as
to how this should be done or what methods should be used as this would
vary from case to case and patient to patient.

 

Annex

 

21 Information accessible to applicant by other means.

 

(1)Information which is reasonably accessible to the applicant otherwise
than under section 1 is exempt information.

(2)For the purposes of subsection (1)—

(a)information may be reasonably accessible to the applicant even though
it is accessible only on payment, and

(b)information is to be taken to be reasonably accessible to the applicant
if it is information which the public authority or any other person is
obliged by or under any enactment to communicate (otherwise than by making
the information available for inspection) to members of the public on
request, whether free of charge or on payment.

(3)For the purposes of subsection (1), information which is held by a
public authority and does not fall within subsection (2)(b) is not to be
regarded as reasonably accessible to the applicant merely because the
information is available from the public authority itself on request,
unless the information is made available in accordance with the
authority’s publication scheme and any payment required is specified in,
or determined in accordance with, the scheme.

 

Freedom of Information complaints procedure

 

The NMC is committed to making information available under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (FOIA) and to ensuring that the service it provides
for those wishing to gain access to information is simple, efficient and
effective.

 

If you feel the service you have received does not meet these aims or your
expectations please write, giving details of your complaint, to:

 

Clementine Adewunmi,

Records and Archives Manager,

Nursing and Midwifery Council,

23 Portland Place

London

W1B 1PZ

[3][email address]      

 

Your complaint will be fully investigated and treated confidentially. If
your complaint is about a response to a request for information, it will
be dealt with by an officer who was not involved in the original decision.
An initial response will be made within 5 working days of receipt of the
complaint. A full investigation and any decision will be made and conveyed
to you within 20 working days. If we are unable to deal with your
complaint within this time, we will inform you and let you know the reason
for the delay.

 

If your complaint is upheld you will be notified of what action will be
taken. If it is a request for information, the information will be
provided to you. If the complaint is not upheld you will be given a reason
for the decision.

If we do not deal with your complaint to your satisfaction, you are
entitled to refer your complaint to:

 

The Information Commissioner’s Office,

Wycliffe House,

Water Lane,

Wilmslow

Cheshire,

SK9 5AF

Tel: 0303 123 1113 (local rate)

Tel: 01625 545 745 if you prefer to use a national rate number

[4]www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk

Yours sincerely,
 

William Pounder

FOI and Data Protection Officer

Technology Business and Innovation(TBI)
020 7681 5709

Nursing and Midwifery Council
23 Portland Place
London W1B 1PZ
[5]www.nmc-uk.org

show quoted sections