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Chief Nursing Officer outlines the future for mental health nurses in Northern Ireland

Thursday, 28 October 2010

The Chief Nursing Officer has launched a framework which sets out the priorities for mental health nurses for the next five years.

The Framework -“Delivering Excellence Supporting Recovery: A Professional Framework for Mental Health Nurses in Northern Ireland (2011 – 2016)” is the first strategic framework to be published in Northern Ireland for the mental health nursing profession.

Speaking at the 7th Annual Mental Health Conference at Magee Campus, Londonderry, Martin Bradley said:

“We are all aware of the challenges and pressures that lie ahead within mental health services. The pace of change will be great and new ways of working will be required. Mental health nurses and support staff are key to achieving our intended vision and aspirations within mental health services.

“This framework sets out the focus and priorities for mental health nursing over the next five years and provides a structure to ensure that safety, quality and patient and client experience are at the heart of nursing care, delivered to service users, their carers and families.”

Notes to editors:

1. Mental Health Nurses are the largest professional discipline working within mental health services.

2. In percentage terms they account for 70% of the statutory mental health workforce. They work in a wide range of statutory, private and voluntary services and across a broad range of specialisms.

3. The framework for mental health nursing has considered local, national, and international literature and evidence, alongside the strategic context of service delivery in Northern Ireland. It complements the recently launched A Partnership for Care: The Northern Ireland Strategy for Nursing and Midwifery (2010 – 2015) (DHSSPS 2010) and aims to:

  • Identify and broadcast examples of good practice in mental health nursing.
  • Identify and analyse gaps and weaknesses that affect optimum care delivery by the mental health nursing profession.
  • Examine what it is that service users and their carers want and value most from mental health nurses.
  • Highlight the key priority areas for improvement, and/or development for the mental health nursing profession, linked to relevant policy, legislative and strategic programmes.
  • Identify and recommend the professional, educational, and organisational conditions and strategies that are required to empower and enable mental health nurses to achieve their potential.

4. The document is available online at the DHSSPS website.

5. Media queries to DHSSPS Press Office on 028 9052 0074 or out of hours contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 9971 5440 and your call will be returned.