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Quality and Safety Bulletin

All the latest in quality and safety with the RCN's Quality and Safety Bulletin. 

If you'd like to keep up to date with all the latest in quality and safety, you can subscribe to the Quality and Safety Bulletin. The Bulletin highlights the professional work of the RCN and features all the latest news on the following: quality improvement, patient safety, evidence-based practice, patient and staff-focused care and eHealth.

Become an AP

Become an Assistant Practitioner

Assistant practitioners are a growing part of the health care workforce. Sometimes known as associate practitioners, they take on more responsibilities than healthcare assistants, under the delegation of registered colleagues in a range of different settings.

With the introduction of the nursing associate role, we wanted to outline the role of the assistant practitioner and dispel some of the myths and misinformation. This page provides information and guidance to anyone wishing to become an assistant practitioner or employ an assistant practitioner. We include links to assistant practitioners who are happy to share their role.  

See: Become an Assistant Practitioner

RCN highlights

The latest news from the RCN on professional issues including publications, policy briefings, events and NICE consultations.


RCN appoints Dame Donna Kinnair as Chief Executive & General Secretary

The Royal College of Nursing has appointed Dame Donna Kinnair as its Chief Executive and General Secretary.


Understaffing putting patients' lives at risk despite post-Francis policies

The RCN has stated that understaffing is putting patients' lives at risk despite post-Francis report policies.

Quality improvement

Learn more about developments in quality improvement through content giving practice examples, describing tools, learning through innovation and case studies, commentary and statistics.

NHS England

NHS England to fund pioneering new brain surgery for children who are deaf

Pioneering brain surgery that allows children who are deaf to experience the sensation of hearing for the first time is being made routinely available by the NHS.

Public Health England

The pharmacy offer for sexual health, reproductive health and HIV: a resource for commissioners and providers

Public Health England have released a new resource that explores the capacity and capability of pharmacy teams to provide high-quality sexual and reproductive health services.

Patient safety

Follow this theme to discover what patient safety means as a practice. We share learning from practitioners, and researchers and findings from the developing field of human factors in healthcare.

BBC News

200 hospital patients died while waiting to be discharged in 2018

The BBC have reported that more than 200 people died in Northern Ireland's hospitals in 2018 while waiting to be discharged.

Digital Health

Patient safety charity calls for regulatory standards for medical apps

Patient Safety Learning, a patient safety charity, has called for consistent regulatory standards to be applied to medical apps.

Evidence based practice

This theme explores what it means to practise in line with best available evidence. It highlights evidence based practice guidelines, research and other tools and updates on evidence based techniques and processes from across the UK. International content from credible resources is also included.

Public Health England

UK immunisation schedule: the green book, chapter 11 (updated)

Public Health England has updated their immunisation recommendations to reflect the recent changes to the routine childhood immunisation schedule, as well as those to the adult programme.


Caesarean section

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has published guidance to improve the consistency and quality of care for women who are considering a caesarean section.

Patient focus

Patient focus looks at the issues that relate to partnership working and shared decision making. It covers people’s human rights including the right to privacy and confidentiality.


'It’s so rewarding': the new role improving care home residents' health

The Guardian has reported on a new £1m pilot scheme which has trained more than 40 enhanced care coordinators to improve the health of care home residents.

Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership

Involving patients

The Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership has set out their vision, commitment and approach to involving, engaging and informing patients and their representative organisations.


eHealth covers the ways technologies can act as key enablers in delivering healthcare in today’s society. It’s much more than any one type of technology or device. We are seeing the appearance of new operational models supported by technology.

BBC News

Technology to keep dementia patients out of hospital

Commentary from BBC News has highlighted new technology, including sensors small enough to fit in the ear, robotic devices and sleep monitors, could all become standard technology in the homes of people with dementia.


Tens of millions in STP tech funding held back

The HSJ has revealed that NHS England has been unable to distribute all of the funding it had set aside for technology improvement projects within sustainability and transformation partnerships (STPs).

Staff focus

This theme highlights health and morale of the workforce. A positive working environment benefits staff and patients. Creating the best possible working conditions for nursing staff enables them to deliver the highest standards of patient care.

University of Southampton

Implementation, impact and costs of policies for safe staffing in acute NHS trusts

A report from the University of Southampton has found that hospital wards across the NHS in England are still under staffed and putting patient lives at risk despite new policies coming into force.

Health Education England

New bite-sized e-learning sessions for health professionals

Public Health England and Health Education England have launched new e-learning to improve the knowledge, confidence and skills of all health and care professionals in preventing illness, protecting health and promoting wellbeing.

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Quality and Safety eBulletin

Latest issue: 2 May 2019

Previous eBulletin: 18 April 2019


Research conference

RCN International Nursing Research Conference

This conference is open to anyone interested in nursing and research. It will be of particular interest to nurses, and colleagues in related disciplines, involved in the development and use of knowledge that impacts on nursing practice or the context in which nurses’ practice.

Book now