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Volume 978: debated on Tuesday 12 February 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when he will be in a position to give details as to schemes for the training of nurses in the private sector; and if he is satisfied that, with the absence of accident, geriatric, psychiatric and pregnancy termination services, private hospitals provide a comprehensive service.

The General Nursing Council for England and Wales is responsible for the approval of basic nurse training courses whether in the NHS or the independent sector; these courses require experience in various specialities. Outline curricula for special post-basic courses are developed and issued by the Joint Board for Clinical Nursing Studies. A considerable amount of nurse training and education is carried out in the independent health sector. Approved training courses are currently provided at a number of private hospitals. In addition to these formal schemes, the independent sector provides a range of in-service and developmental training for nurses.Officials in the Department are currently discussing with representatives of the independent sector ways in which its contribution to the training of hospital staff, particularly nurses, might be developed.