Overview of the Council
The Nursing Council of Jamaica is a statutory body set up by the Government of Jamaica to regulate and control the professions of nursing and midwifery in Jamaica. The Council was established in 1952 and operates under the Nurses and Midwives Act of 1964 and the Amendment of 2005 that enables the biennial relicensing process.
The Nurses and Midwives Act confers on the Nursing Council of Jamaica the power to control the education and training and the practice of nurses, midwives and assistant nurses in Jamaica. The Council has also the responsibility to register nurses and midwives and enrol assistant nurses.
The primary objective of the Council is to protect the public's health and welfare by ensuring that safe and competent nursing and midwifery care is provided by licensed nurses and midwives. The Council achieves its mission by setting standards for nursing and midwifery education practice and ensures that licenses are issued only to nurses and midwives who keep their knowledge and skills current and relevant, and uphold the ethics of the profession.
All nurses and or midwives who are desirous of working in Jamaica, need to apply for and be registered with the Nursing Council of Jamaica. The Council has a system of reciprocal registration with CARICOM countries whose nurses are qualified by passing the Regional Examination for Nurse Registration.
Whenever nurses and midwives who received their education and training outside of the CARICOM states and are registered with an overseas authority apply to the Council for registration in Jamaica, each application is assessed on an individual basis.
Composition of Council
The Council consists of fifteen (15) members appointed by the Honourable Minister of Health, with recommendations from the professional nursing/midwifery organizations. The Minister also appoints the Chairman of the Council and an Attorney – At – Law.
The Council formulates policies' that bring improvement to Nursing education and Nursing practice. The Registrar, who is the Chief Executive of the Council, ensures the implementation of policy decisions of the Council.
The Registrar is responsible for the day to day administration of the Council and the incumbent is also the Accounting officer of the organization. The Registrar is assisted by an Assistant and other multidisciplinary personnel staff members.
The Council is aware of the various trends associated with emergent issues on the healthcare and nursing landscapes, and concludes that there is the need for teamwork among stakeholders to effect change. With this realization Council recently conducted a comprehensive review of its activities, from management to the implementation levels. The outcome of this strategic review has resulted in recommendations for some significant changes to the structure and function of the Council that will always be manifested in evidence based nursing regulation.