Register Online

Frequently Asked Questions


Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is a process of lifelong learning aimed at

improving and broadening knowledge, skills and attitudes, necessary for provision of

quality nursing and midwifery care.

CPD is ‘continuing’ because there are always new developments happening in nursing

and midwifery which must be incorporated into practice.

CPD is ‘professional’ because it is directly linked to professional competence.

CPD is about ‘development’ because the goal is to improve performance by assisting

in gaining a deeper understanding of professional roles and responsibilities.


  1. Procurement of CPD LogBook from NMCM
  2. Identification of learning needs:
  • Self Assessment
  • Peer Evaluation
  • Performancer Appraisal
  • Institutional learning needs
  1. Development of Learning Action Plan
  2. Communication of learning needs to CPD coordinator/nurse manager
  3. Attend CPD sessions according to one’s learning needs in addition to two compulsory CPD Modules
  4. Documentation of CPD activities in CPD LogBook; signed by CPD facilitator and verfied by the CPD coordinator
  5. CPD LogBook to be submitted to CPD coordinator/nurse manager quartely
  6. CPD coordinator/ nurse manager to submit biannual CPD Report to NMCM by July and January to track progress
  7. Nurses/midwives submit completed CPD LogBook to nurse managers for final review and documentation of achieved CPD points
  8. Nurse managers/ CPD coordinators submit Final CPD Report to NMCM and attach the annual registration fee pay slip by June
  9. NMCM issues annual practising licence
  10. NMCM visits facilities for M & E.


Learning needs can be identified through the following sources:

  • Self assessment by individual practitioners
  • Peer evaluation
  • Performance appraisal
  • Institutional needs

Practitioners need to obtain the required number of CPD points per year, in order to be eligible to apply for re-registration with the NMCM.

The content of any CPD session must be related to nursing and midwifery or health related topics in order to improve provision of quality services.

The CPD Coordinator will lead the CPD committees at their institutions, coordinate the CPD programme and report bi-annually to the Council.

A record of CPD activities is to be kept by the individual nurse/midwife in their CPD LogBook. The records should include:

  • The date when the CPD session was attended
  • The topic of the CPD session, duration (hours) and number of CPD points awarded
  • The name and signature of the CPD presenter, as well as of the CPD coordinator.

WHAT ARE THE Required CPD Points per Cadre, per Year?

CPD points for

Self assessment (SA):                  3

Peer evaluation (PE):                    3

Performance appraisal (PA):       4

Learning Action Plan (LAP):       5

Making a total of    15 CPD Points.





15 points through SA, PE, PA, LAP + CPD activities Total CPD Points required
1 CMA 15 + 10 25
2 NMT 15 + 15 30
3 RNM 15 + 20 35
4 Advanced Practitioner 15 +25 40


CPD non-compliance: It is illegal to practice without a valid license.

Nurses/midwives not complying to CPD shall not be allowed to renew their practicing licenses.

Penalties for employers and nurses/midwives shall be determined as stipulated by  the Nurses and Midwives Act.


CPD points will be allocated as follows:



CPD activity
1 Attending a CPD session (duration of at least 1 hour)

Being mentored

Attending a journal club

2 Presenting a CPD (if this is a learning need)

Mentoring (practical skill)

Research participation (e.g. data collection)

Attending a conference within Malawi

Attending external CPD (if topic is not offered by own institution)

Facilitating a journal club

e-Learning activities

3 Attending CPD/ conference outside Malawi
5 Conducting research

Presenting on a conference

Publication as co-author

Engagement in clinical practice for non-bedside nurses (1 full shift)

10 Publication in a journal or book (corresponding author)

Note: Individuals undergoing orientation of any duration will be awarded

CPD points as follows:

CMA: 25                     RNM: 35

NMT: 30                     Advanced practitioner: 40

Employee induction shall not qualify as CPD activity and no points will be

awarded for orientation activities.


NMCM has prescribed the following 10 compulsory CPD modules, of which 2 have to be completed annually, with each accounting for

3 points:

  1. Emergency Triage Assessment and Treatment (ETAT)
  2. Infection Prevention
  3. Fire awareness
  4. Customer care (Team work, performance appraisal, conflict resolution)
  5. Disaster preparedness and management
  6. Clinical teaching (mentorship, preceptorship)
  7. Professionalism
  8. Population Health (Gender, Youth friendly health services, NCDs, family planning)
  9. Utilisation of medical nursing and midwifery technologies
  10. Quality improvement

Note: CMAs are not required to attend the “Clinical Teaching” module and the content for their compulsory modules needs to be levelled.


Exemption from CPD Requirements

Exemption from CPD requirements will be granted to the following nursing and midwifery categories:

  • Interns and volunteers working in Malawi for a period of less than 1 year.
  • Retired and non-practicing nurses and midwives.
  • Studying a recognized education programme in a health-related field (Certifications, Master or PhD degree, etc.).

CPD exemption will be limited to the period of study.


  • Those exempted from CPD, are not exempted from the paying annual registration fee at N
  • Newly qualified nurses are not exempted.

Exemption Process

Exemption from CPD activities shall be subject to approval by the Council upon written application by the individual practitioner. The practitioner shall be exempted from penalties on the following grounds:

  • Proof of illness in form of a medical report.
  • Substantial reason as endorsed by the employer, such as special duty, or as may be approved by the Council.

Exemption will be provided upon review of the evidence given.

Those are the Questions in our CPD Guidelines:

 Question: I have done some in-service education training, how is CPD different from this and why do we have to do it?

Answer: In-service education and government training courses are all part of CPD.  The NMCM is introducing this programme to ensure that all these types of trainings are formally recorded to meet certain requirements under the Nurses and Midwives Act and help nurse /midwives maintain and update their skills and knowledge in order to provide the best service they can.

Question: How can I get started on my CPD?

Answer: Once you have read this CPD GuideLines and feel you understand what the CPD requirements are, do your self assessment and make your learning action plan. This will help get you started and show what activities you might like to get involved with.

 Question: I’m worried that I have not done any formal learning or attended any training for a long time – will I be able to do CPD?

Answer: CPD is all about different kinds of learning, on the job training, in-service education, discussions with colleagues, reading books, going to clinical meetings…there will be lots of things you can do.  Talk to the CPD Coordinator or nurse manager, who will be able to help you with your CPD.

 Question: Why is CPD necessary?

Answer: CPD ensures all members of the nursing and midwifery professions keep pace with health care developments affecting their practice and deliver high quality nursing and midwifery care and services.

Question: Is there an upper limit in acquiring points for CPD?

Answer: No, there is not, especially when there is growing evidence of the need to link CPD with organizational/institutional goals.

Question: What are the key principles behind CPD? 

Answer: CPD is self-directed, based on learning needs identified by the individual, builds on an individual’s existing knowledge and experience, links an individual’s learning to their practice, and includes an evaluation of the individual’s development.

Question: What do you mean by practice?

Answer: Practice means any role, whether remunerated or not, in which the individual uses their skills and knowledge as a health practitioner in their profession. Practice in this context is not restricted to the provision of direct clinical care. It also includes using professional knowledge (working) in a direct nonclinical relationship with clients, working in management, administration, education, research, advisory, regulatory or policy development roles, and any other roles that impact on the safe, effective delivery of services in the profession.

Question: How best can I create a learning action plan?

Answer: Following your reflection and assessment, create a learning plan that focuses on the priority area you identified. Develop realistic learning objectives by asking:

o What knowledge/skill do you want to gain?

o How will you acquire this knowledge/skill?

o What performance do you expect to demonstrate as a result of this new learning?

o When will this learning be accomplished?

o How does this relate to your role and practice?

Question: How best can I implement my learning plan?

Answer: As you complete each planned learning activity, document its completion on your Learning Plan. You may identify additional learning activities that assist you in meeting your learning objectives, record them as well. To start assessment for the next practice year, reflect on the benefit of the learning you completed by asking:

o Did the learning activities help you meet your learning objectives?

o Was/were the learning objective(s) you set realistic and achievable?

o Did you encounter any resistance or challenges associated with completing your learning activities?

Question: I am currently not working in the profession but I am still registered (because I am on maternity leave, travelling etc.). Do I still need to do CPD?

Answer: As a nurse or midwife you may choose not to work in the profession for a variety of reasons (such as maternity leave, extended overseas travel, moving overseas, an extended career break or retirement), however, you may want to keep registration. Under these circumstances, you must continue to complete CPD in relation to your context of practice.

Question: What if I don’t meet my CPD requirements?

Answer: At the time of renewal, you need to make a declaration about your CPD. You are able to apply to the NMCM for an exemption in exceptional circumstances if you feel that you have not met your minimum hours for CPD. If you declared that you do not meet met your requirements for CPD you may be contacted to provide additional information.

Question: How do I apply for an exemption?

Answer: The registration standard states that the NMCM reserves the right to grant exemptions to individual cases.

 Question: What are Registration Audits?

Answer: Nurses and midwives are randomly audited against registration standards. If this happens, you will be asked to provide a record of how you achieved compliance with the mandatory registration standards of the NMCM. These audits occur periodically throughout the year. Anyone selected will receive an audit notice letter in the mail from NMCM. It will outline what is required to provide evidence of compliance with registration standards. You will be asked to confirm you have completed the required CPD hours declared in the CPD Report, made when you apply to renew your registration.

Question: Will we get allowances from the NMCM for attending CPD activities and training?

Answer: No. The NMCM will not be paying allowances to attend CPD. Allowances may be paid at the discretion of the CPD centre depending on their funding constraints, the type of training and logistics of the programme. CPD should be part of your everyday professional working life and it is your responsibility to meet the requirements, including any financial costs, where applicable.