Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (SCPHN)
Specific information for Specialist Community Public Health Nurses
The Specialist Community Public Health Nursing (SCPHN) part of the register contains registered nurses and midwives who are working in public health roles, who have undertaken NMC approved SCPHN courses that incorporate the ten recognised public health competencies. The standards for the preparation of SCPHNs can be read and downloaded:
SCPHN programmes can only be undertaken by individuals who are already registered on the Nurses and, or midwives part of the NMC register. SCPHNS must also maintain their registration as a nurse or a midwife and cannot renew their registration only as a SCPHN.
Some SCPHNs have their area of practice identified on the register for example, health visitors (HV), school nurses (SN), occupational health nurses (OHN), family nurses (FHN). This indicates that the programme they have undertaken had a focus on preparing them for a particular area of practice. Others will be on the register as SCPHNs without a field of practice identified and may work in more generic public health roles.
SCPHNs can undertake additional programmes to enable them to practise in a different field (NMC Circular 26/2006). This does not however lead to additional annotation. This is because having more than one annotation on the register would not add to public protection as it would not indicate which field a SCPHN was practising in at any given time.
Nurses and midwives working as SCPHNs not only work with individuals but also with populations. A population may be determined by age, gender, geography, workplace, ethnicity, social circumstances. This means decisions made by SCPHNs can affect whole populations without the nurse or midwife having direct contact with individuals. For this reason their regulation is considered separately by the SCPHN part of the register.