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Neurodiversity Guidance

For Neurodiverse healthcare professionals and  healthcare students and their managers, mentors, teams and union reps.

This ever growing resource combines the professional expertise and lived experience of RCN members. Together we celebrate and support Neurodiverse nurses, nursing support workers and nursing students.

These pages are the result of ongoing collaboration between the RCN Education Forum and RCN Peer Support Service as we create new guidance about Neurodiversity as it affects our members. 

We'd really appreciate your feedback and stories.

Please email peer.support@rcn.org.uk with any comments or suggestions, a call back can be arranged to discuss if preferred.

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What is Neurodiversity?

Find out more about Neurodiversity.               

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Neurodiverse Nursing

Support for neurodiverse nurses, nursing support workers and student nurses.

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Guidance for Managers

Suggestions for supporting Neurodiverse staff. 

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Recruitment

Neurodiversity inclusive recruitment tips for candidates or recruiters.
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ND reading list

Some recommended reading on Neurodiversity from the RCN library.            
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Join Peer Support

Speak to other neurodiverse RCN members.

Watch RCN digital events on neurodiversity in nursing.

Members of the steering group presented a session at the RCN Congress Integrated Education Programme in September 2021. Watch Dr Rachael Major's presentation on neurodiversity in nursing, and hear about the lived experience of steering group members and why robust neurodiversity guidance for RCN members is so important. 

Watch a recording of the event here

This event, hosted by RCN London, brought together members with lived experience of autism and representatives from NHS Employers and Access to Work to look at what it is like to be an autistic healthcare professional and the support that is available for neurodiverse nursing staff.

Watch a recording of the event here.

Did you know that Neurodiverse people have strengths that make them great healthcare professionals?

However, barriers can stop them from being able to do their best work and lead to low morale and we all have a part to play in changing this for the better.

In her keynote, Kerry shared her how she supports neurodiverse healthcare professionals to be the best they can be. This practical session covered Disabled Students Allowance, Access to Work, the challenges faced and some approaches to overcome them. It also looked at the many strengths and qualities neurodiverse people bring to the health sector. 

You can watch a recording of the event here.

Dr Rachael Major shared some preliminary findings of her latest research in this area. She then joined the rest of the panel in a lively discussion about Neurodiversity in nursing. The panel represented those with ADHD, Dyspraxia,  Dyslexia, ASD, students, qualified nurses and  nurse academics who shared their lived experience of Neurodiversity. Read the panel's biographies here.

You can watch a recording of the event here

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What is intersectionality?

Intersectionality is when an individual faces multiple causes of discrimination and disadvantage because their protected characteristics and other identities overlap.

It's important that we are aware that being Neurodiverse can be a very different experience for each person. That's why we want to make sure we hear from as many of our members as possible about your lived experience. 

Why is a diverse nursing workforce  important?

Health care professionals with lived experience of disability bring skills,experience and knowledge.

They are a valuable resource and essential to addressing safe and effective staffing issues in the UK. 

They challenge outdated perceptions and send a positive message to patients.  

RCN Education forum

Get involved and join the RCN's Education Forum. It has its own closed Facebook group where you can speak to other RCN members working in this field.

Peer Support Service

This is a network for sharing experiences and knowledge, and promoting a positive approach towards health care professionals with lived experience of disability.