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Health visitor: Training

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To work in the UK, all nurses, midwives and specialist community public health nurses (including health visitors) must register with the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC)  and pay an annual registration fee. They must renew their registration every three years and have undertaken at least 450 hours of relevant work and 35 hours' professional development in that period. Various activities are recognised as professional development including conference or seminar attendance, distance learning study and personal research.

Post-entry training varies between trusts, with each providing its own training to support professional development. Generally, training involves a system of mentorship for the first year. There are various courses, both in-house and external, that you may wish or be encouraged to attend, in areas such as child protection, positive parenting, nutrition, immunisation, postnatal depression and domestic violence.

Depending on individual trusts, there are other opportunities to develop areas of professional interest through post-registration degrees or research projects. Sponsorships, grants and scholarships are available through a number of charities, academic institutions and professional bodies, and research can also be self-funded. There are also opportunities to get involved in projects aimed at improving or enhancing specific areas of healthcare services. The Community Practitioners' and Health Visitors' Association (CPHVA)  has details and also publicises open training courses.

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Written by AGCAS editors
October 2013

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