Introduction

The Faculty of Occupational Health Nursing is a Community Interest Company established to “promote and strengthen the learning and practice of the art and science of occupational health nursing”. FOHN admits both professional members and Friends of the Faculty.

The FOHN Accreditation scheme is a voluntary scheme that will enable the occupational health nursing profession to join a Directory of FOHN Accredited Specialists in the UK which recognises occupational health nurses throughout their occupational health career.  The accreditation scheme aims to assess good practice, endorse exceptional practice, and create a development route for those nurses aspiring to work at an advanced level.

It is characterised by the following principles:

  • Recognition of education, experience, and other attributes
  • Competency linked to NMC Post Registration Standards
  • Professional development in the specialty
  • Improvement of the interface between work and health

There are many nurses working in an occupational health setting who have gained knowledge, skills and experience but may not be valued for the positive impact they have on health and wellbeing at work. FOHN sees accreditation as providing a framework for recognition of their level of practice rather than a particular role or title; and regardless of whether that role is in clinical practice, research, education or management/leadership.

This handbook sets out the accreditation scheme developed by the FOHN and conducted in consultation with occupational health nurses, representative groups and other stakeholder. The number of organisations and individuals who deserve thanks for their contribution stretches far and wide. This scheme belongs to all those aspiring to develop a career in occupational health nursing.

As we now embark on the equally important job of delivering on the scheme, and the ongoing review and development needed to ensure it remains relevant to the changing world of occupational health, it will continue to take all of us to achieve success – a high quality, proud and impactful occupational health nursing workforce, there to improve and maintain the health of the working population and the working environment.

What is accreditation?

Accreditation provides recognition of your knowledge, skills, experience, and attributes over your career.

Get accredited

You can work towards achieving Specialist Practitioner or Advanced Specialist status and demonstrate to your peers, employers and clients that you have committed yourself to your career and its development. No other organisation offers accreditation in occupational health nursing. We also have a fellowship scheme that awards those who have delivered excellence in our amazing discipline.

Accreditation complements professional registration and all the requirements of the NMC revalidation must be met by all professional members and accredited specialists. Those who achieve accreditation must demonstrate a clear commitment to the NMC Code and the FOHN Code of Conduct.

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Eligibility

Only FOHN professional members can apply for accreditation.

The accreditation scheme is intended for those who aspire to join the voluntary Directory of FOHN Accredited Specialists in the UK. It will be awarded to those applicants who can demonstrate that they meet our eligibility requirements and show the attributes expected of an occupational health nurse specialist.

Anyone interested in supporting the work of FOHN can join as Friends of the Faculty and enjoy the benefits that membership brings.

The initial accreditation period is three years.

Progressing in your career

You will need a minimum of two years of work experience in occupational health nursing for Practitioner Membership and a minimum of four years for Specialist Membership. You must be able to demonstrate narrow but deep knowledge of occupational health nursing practice in at least one area of competency for Practitioner Membership, a much broader knowledge and experience of occupational health nursing practice for Specialist Membership, and knowledge and experience at a higher level across a wide range of occupational health nursing practice for Advanced Specialist Membership. Your application will usually involve keeping a logbook of the work you undertake during your years as a Member. It’s important to start this process early, so that you have all the necessary records when you wish to apply. You should read the information about Specialist Membership as soon as you become a student or Practitioner Member.

FOHN recognises some nurses may not meet the requirements of the accreditation scheme, but the accreditation scheme and accompanying competences provide a model for professional development and future accreditation.

Professional Membership

If you are a Registered Nurse with experience in occupational health nursing you are welcome to join us as a professional member, no matter what areas of the occupational health field of practice you work in.

Professional membership will allow you to nurture your interest and expand your knowledge as you can access members-only information and material, share best practice and learn about the application of occupational health nursing in your own area of work. By joining our community, you will have access to support and guidance, and you will be able to network with other members in Working Groups and during our events. Our closed Facebook site will enable you to ask questions, get answers and discuss occupational health topics that interest you.

As a professional member, you will get access to a range of valuable benefits including:

  • Free online access to member only resources
  • Reduced-rate entry to events organised by FOHN
  • A free copy of our regular e-newsletter and regular bulletins
  • Preview copy of new FOHN guidance and tools
  • Discounted indemnity insurance through our nominated provider

Categories

FOHN have four professional membership categories; you can choose the route to membership that’s right for you to suit your career pathway. No matter what route you take, you’ll demonstrate to employers and colleagues that you’re committed to achieving the highest levels of knowledge, skills and professional attributes in the field. Your experience, qualifications and aspirations will determine which journey you take through the membership categories.

    Practitioner: Registered nurse experienced in occupational health for a minimum of 2 years.

    Specialist Practitioner: Registered nurse who has qualified from a FOHN approved OH course. 2 years’ post qualification experience.

    Advanced Specialist: Specialist Practitioner with enhanced competency and commitment. 4 years’ post qualification experience.

    Fellow: Board appointed membership, post accreditation. Significant contribution to occupational health.

    Membership Fees

    Practitioner Member: £10 per annum

    Specialist Practitioner Member: £15 per annum

    Advanced Specialist Member: £20 per annum

    Fellow Member: £25 per annum

    Accreditation Process

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    Membership Criteria

    FOHN seeks to credential nurses who fulfil the criteria for various levels of practice, to recognise this level of practice and to continue to develop the specialty. Therefore, a set of criteria that represents the very best in occupational health nursing practice has been developed, with the support of the profession.

    The criteria have four elements:

    • Education
    • Work experience
    • Competence
    • Referee

    Education

    All applicants must be registered nurses who meet the educational requirements for each of the categories of professional membership.

    Work experience

    Experience of work in occupational health is a key requirement and is linked both to length and hours of practice.  You must ensure that your logbook gives a detailed account of your activities or projects, not just a brief description.

    Competence

    You are advised to ensure that your self-assessment against the four pillars of the occupational health nursing competencies is in relation to your actual practice and not your aspirations. The competency checklist supports career progression.

    Referee

    Referees play a vital role in supporting the Faculty Accreditation Board in assessing how applicants deliver occupational health nursing practice.

    The following professional membership categories will assist you in deciding whether you meet the requirements. If you do not have the required evidence, you should not submit an application, as it is unlikely to be successful and we are unable to refund your application fee.

    FOHN have produced a series of document to help you get the most out of accreditation

    (Click on any of the following links to download)

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