Press Rel 3/2019

The SANC Press Rel 3/2019

6 May 2019

TO: News Editor
FROM: Ms SA Mchunu
Registrar and CEO

 

SANC responds to claims regarding training of nurses

 

The South African Nursing Council (SANC) notes with concern the recent article in the news by Solidarity’s Occupational Guild for Nursing regarding the training of nurses in South Africa.

According to the article South Africa is experiencing critical problems with regards to the training of nurses, with Mr Hennie Bierman, Head of the Occupational Guild for Nursing is quoted as saying: “…. the SANC’s ineffectiveness has a negative impact on the finalisation of regulations on nursing training”.

The statement is factually incorrect. The SANC has developed and duly submitted all regulations regarding the offering of the new nursing programmes. Regulations relating to undergraduate programmes were promulgated by the Minister as far back as 2013 including regulations for the accreditation of institutions as Nursing Education Institutions (NEIs). Those regarding the offering of post-graduate diploma programmes were completed and submitted in 2017. The Department of Health has been processing and continues to process these regulations and consults with the South African Nursing Council as it deems fit. It is not clear which Regulations the article is referring to as there are no outstanding regulations for offering of the Undergraduate programmes that have not been developed by the SANC and duly submitted to the Department of Health.

The article further states that “…the SANC’s ineffectiveness has a negative impact on the ……accreditation of new training institutions for nursing training, practice, and programmes, as well as the reaccreditation of existing institutions and programmes offering nurses’ training”. This statement is incorrect and misinformed. The SANC can only accredit institutions that have duly applied and met the set accreditation criteria and requirements. Those training institutions that have met such requirements now have either full or conditional accreditation and will in all likelihood commence offering the new nursing programmes in 2020. These include some universities and private institutions. In addition, the process of reaccreditation is not automatic, and institutions that have the capacity to offer the new nursing qualifications have duly applied. Names of institutions, both private and public, which have been accredited by the SANC will be published on its website www.sanc.co.za to assist the public.

The article proceeded to describe a lack of communication between the SANC and the Department of Higher Education as the main reason for the delay in “……accreditation of all nursing courses and the approval of private training institutions have been dragging on since 2014”. This statement is not just false and generic but malicious as the SANC is in communication with applicant institutions to keep them informed about where they are in the process. Communication with the Department of Higher Education, which is not mandatory, has taken place as and when where both parties had matters to discuss.

Another statement: “Unfortunately, neither the private training institutions nor the new curricula have been approved or accredited. Therefore, nurses’ training has ground to a halt to a large extent. Due to these problems, most private training institutions have not taken in any new nursing students since 2016,” clearly reflects on the author’s lack of information regarding the process that informed the academic and professional reasons for the phasing-out of the legacy programmes that are referred to.

Accusations regarding “…. the delay was impeding accredited private nursing training institutions, and that no private institution had received approval for training over the past three years, and the SANC has suspended many of the courses offered by the existing private institutions back in 2015” is a broad generalisation made without basic insight into facts on why some legacy courses were phased out. Institutions that are a subject of lamentation are also not mentioned in the article, casting doubt on the authenticity of the complaint. Factually, there were only two courses, not many as it is alleged in the article, that were phased out because they were no longer in sync with any framework that located nursing in higher education. Nurses’ training has not ground to a halt as there are still more than twelve (12) programmes that are still offered by qualifying institutions. If the SANC had been contacted, the author of the article would have been enlightened.

The SANC is blamed directly by stating that “This means that even fewer nurses are being trained, putting extra pressure on the existing nurses in the profession, which again impacts service delivery. Given that 60% of the country’s nursing training is done by private training institutions, accreditation of these institutions can prevent shortages of nursing staff in the future.”

The lamentation is not clear and is biased as the author is not specific about the category of nurse that is in short supply and would be resolved by continued training of the two phased-out programmes, which are the one-year auxiliary nursing programme and the two-year programme leading to enrolment as nurse. No evidence exists that products from these two programmes are in short supply.

Claims made that “The SANC and the Department of Health must urgently prioritise their training framework for nursing and they must see to it that they align themselves to avert a training disaster that is in the making,” further demonstrates a total lack of understanding about the required frameworks for training of nurses.

The SANC would like to make it clear that frameworks that reside within its jurisdiction are in place and are known by its stakeholders, specifically Nursing Education Institutions. There are no training regulations that are outstanding from the SANC’s side, competencies for specialization programmes and curriculum frameworks have been developed and published and accreditation requirements as well as processes are in place. Any statements or rumours made to the contrary are a blatant display of lack of proper communication and consultation by the author involved and could have been avoided had the necessary steps been taken to obtain the correct information prior to publishing defamatory claims against the SANC. The overt lack of basic understanding of these matters on the side of the author is regrettable,” says Ms Sizo Mchunu, Registrar and CEO of the SANC.

 

ENDS

Issued by:
Mrs. Adri van Eeden
Senior Manager: Marketing and Communication
South African Nursing Council 
E-mail : avaneeden@sanc.co.za
Website : www.sanc.co.za 
Tel : 012 426-9542

Official Spokesperson and person to be quoted:
Ms. S Mchunu
Registrar and CEO: SA Nursing Council

For more information or to arrange for an interview with the Spokesperson, please contact Mrs. Adri van Eeden on Tel. (012) 426-9542 or email: avaneeden@sanc.co.za 

 

Press Rel 4/2019

The SANC Press Rel 4/2019

31 May 2019

TO: News Editor
FROM: Ms SA Mchunu
Registrar and CEO

 

SANC responds regarding nurse videos


The South African Nursing Council (SANC) is shocked by the apparent conduct of nurses during the incidences on video in two separate cases this past week in Mamelodi and Bloemfontein.

The SANC would like to provide assurance that we view the matters in a very serious light and as such have already started with our own investigations into these matters, to establish facts. As regulator of the nursing profession in South Africa we view any unprofessional conduct as unacceptable,” says Ms Sizo Mchunu, Registrar and CEO of the SANC.


As soon as investigations and possible hearings have been completed the SANC will update the public.

 

ENDS

Issued by:
Mrs. Adri van Eeden
Senior Manager: Marketing and Communication
South African Nursing Council 
E-mail : avaneeden@sanc.co.za
Website : www.sanc.co.za 
Tel : 012 426-9542

Official Spokesperson and person to be quoted:
Ms. S Mchunu
Registrar and CEO: SA Nursing Council

For more information or to arrange for an interview with the Spokesperson, please contact Mrs. Adri van Eeden on Tel. (012) 426-9542 or email: avaneeden@sanc.co.za 

 

Circular 5/2019

The SANC Circular 5/2019

31 May 2019

TO: National Department of Health
  Provincial Departments of Health
  Nursing Education Institutions
  All Stakeholders

 

1. PURPOSE

The purpose of this Circular is to update the National Department of Health, Provincial Departments of Health, Nursing Education Institutions (NEIs) and other relevant stakeholders about the following matters:

1.1 Special concession granted by the South African Nursing Council to qualifying Nursing Education Institutions to have a final intake of students in 2019 for the following nursing programmes:

bullet Course leading to registration as a Nurse (General, Psychiatric and Community) and Midwife (Government Notice No. R.425 of 22 February 1985, as amended);
bullet Course in Clinical Nursing Science leading to registration of an Additional Qualification (Government Notice No. R.212 of 19 February 1993, as amended);
bullet Diploma course in Clinical Nursing Science, Health Assessment, Treatment and Care (Government Notice No. R.48 of 22 January 1982, as amended);
bullet Course leading to registration of the Additional Qualification in Nursing Education (Government Notice No. R.118 of 23 January 1987, as amended);
bullet Course for the Diploma in Nursing Administration (Government Notice No. R.1501 of 08 July 1983, as amended).

1.2 De-accreditation of Nursing Education Institutions that are only accredited to offer the phased out nursing qualifications, as follows:

bullet Course leading to enrolment as a Nursing Auxiliary (Government Notice No. R.2176 of 19 November 1993, as amended);
bullet Course leading to enrolment as an Enrolled Nurse (Government Notice No. R.2175 of 19 November 1993, as amended).

2. SPECIAL CONCESSION

2.1. The Minister of Higher Education and Training has, in line with the provisions of the Higher Education Act, 1997 (Act No. 101 of 1997) declared that the last date for first time entering students enrolling in academic programmes that are not aligned to the Higher Education Qualifications Sub-framework (HEQSF) is 31 December 2019. The implication of this declaration for nursing is that new intakes of students as of January 2020 should be for the new nursing qualifications only.

2.2. The South African Nursing Council is aware of the importance of ensuring that the transition between the offering of ‘legacy’ qualifications and the offering of the new nursing qualifications does not create a gap in the education and training of nurses.

2.3. The Council is further aware of the following matters pertaining to the education and training of nurses and nurse specialists, which are of paramount importance:

2.3.1 Despite the Regulations for undergraduate programmes having been promulgated by the Minister of Health in March 2013 already, many NEIs, including universities, public nursing colleges and private nursing schools have either not submitted any applications for offering these programmes, or only submitted their applications by late 2018. Some NEIs have been fully or conditionally accredited to offer the programmes applied for, while other applications are currently under review.

2.3.2 In terms of Section 2(1) of the Regulations relating to the accreditation of institutions as Nursing Education Institutions (Government Notice No. R.173 of 08 March 2019) an institution may be accredited as a nursing education institution “if, in the case of a public entity, it is established or declared by the Minister of Education as a higher education and training institution”.

Public Nursing Colleges have not been declared higher education and training institutions as yet, and therefore may not offer the new HEQSF-aligned nursing qualifications in 2020. In this regard, it is important also to note that public nursing colleges produce the majority of registered nurses that are comprehensively trained.

2.3.3 Regulations that regulate the postgraduate diploma programmes and the Advanced Diploma in Midwifery have not been promulgated as yet.

2.4. The Council therefore, at its meeting of 27 – 28 March 2019 resolved that all NEIs that are currently accredited to offer the programmes listed under section 1.1 above are allowed to have a last (final) intake of students during the final quarter of the academic year 2019, prior to 31 December 2019. This is a concession and is not mandatory. It is intended to mitigate the risk of creating a gap in comprehensively trained new nurses entering the profession, while the regulatory/ structural issues around the long term education and training of nurses as referred to above are being finalized. The concession will also ensure that there is no gap in training of nurse specialists.

 

3. IMPLICATIONS OF THE SPECIAL CONCESSION

3.1 The Nursing Education Institutions that are currently approved to have one intake per year (in January) for the programmes listed under section 1.1of this Circular may use the concession to have the last (special) intake in June 2019, rather than during the last quarter of the 2019 academic year. Should the NEI not wish to have an intake in June 2019, they may have their last intake during the last quarter of the academic year. However, if they have an intake in June 2019, they cannot have another (third) intake during the last quarter of the 2019 academic year.

3.2 Nursing Education Institutions who are currently approved to have two intakes per year, one in January and one in June of each year, may have the additional last (special) intake during the last quarter of the 2019 academic year.

3.3 Nursing Education Institutions intending to utilize the special concession during the last quarter of the academic year should ensure that all student applications are submitted to the SANC before 20 December 2019.

3.4 The Nursing Education Institutions must adhere to the approved numbers per intake.

 

4. DE-ACCREDITATION OF THE NURSING EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS THAT ARE ONLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THE PHASED OUT NURSING QUALIFICATIONS

4.1 The phasing out of the two nursing programmes listed under item 1.2 of this Circular was communicated by the Council via Circular 13/2014, published on 30 September 2014. This was further gazetted as Government Notice No. R.928 of 09 October 2015.

4.2 The Regulations relating to the accreditation of institutions as Nursing Education Institutions (Government Notice No. R.173 of 08 March 2019) stipulate all the conditions and requirements for accreditation of an institution as a nursing education institution.

4.3 In terms of the Regulations relating to the accreditation of institutions as Nursing Education Institutions (Government Notice No. R.173 of 08 March 2019), a Nursing Education Institution must be accredited for and offer an accredited Nursing Programme; therefore all the Nursing Education Institutions that were offering only the phased out ‘legacy’ programmes can no longer be recognized as Nursing Education Institutions, as they no longer meet the criteria in terms of these Regulations.

4.4 The Council therefore, at its meeting of 27 – 28 March 2019, resolved that all the Nursing Education Institutions which were accredited to offer only the phased out legacy programmes listed under section 1.2 of this Circular are to be de-accredited, as they no longer offer any nursing programme.

 

5. IMPLICATIONS FOR THE NURSING EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS THAT WERE PREVIOUSLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THE PHASED OUT NURSING QUALIFICATIONS ONLY

Based on the content as set out under section 4 above, the SANC would like to notify all the Nursing Education Institutions that were previously accredited to only offer the phased out nursing programmes listed under 1.2 of this Circular of the following: 

5.1 The names of the affected NEIs will be reflected as ‘de-accredited’ in the SANC database.

5.2 These institutions must remove any reference to ‘accreditation by the South African Nursing Council (SANC)’ from all documentation, marketing/advertising material or displays containing such reference.

5.3 These institutions are free to apply to offer the HEQSF-aligned nursing qualifications. In order to be accredited as a Nursing Education Institution, each applicant must not only meet the Council’s requirements and any standards as may be determined from time to time, but all other requirements for the offering of such programmes as well.

 

6. IMPLEMENTATION

This Circular becomes implementable and valid on the date of issue.

 

For further information in respect of this Circular, you are advised to contact the SANC Senior Manager: Education and Training, Ms SJ Nxumalo at 012 420 1022 or jnxumalo@sanc.co.za.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

(Signed)

Ms SA Mchunu
Registrar and CEO
South African Nursing Council