Healthcare Assistants and Support Workers can now pursue one of three exciting new career pathways, leading to Band 4 or Band 5 roles
The Nursing Associate role is set as a level 5 apprenticeship. It was designed to bridge the gap between healthcare support workers and registered nurses, to deliver hands-on, person-centred care as part of a multidisciplinary team in a range of different settings.
Qualified Nursing Associates will have the option to study towards becoming a registered Nurse, by putting their training and qualifications towards a shortened nursing degree programme, or completing a shortened degree-level Nurse Apprenticeship
To see which educational institutes offer the Nursing Associate course, please see the NMC approved programme search, and select "Nursing Associate" within the "course" field.
The Nursing Degree Apprenticeship (NDA) will enable individuals to train "on the job," to become a graduate registered nurse through an apprentice route, meaning they will be paid whilst training.
Apprentices will be released by their employer to study part-time in a higher education institution and will train in a range of practice placement settings. They will learn at Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) approved education providers and will be expected to achieve the same standards as other student nurses.
Assistant Practitioners, (sometimes also called Associate Practitioners) are a growing part of the healthcare workforce. They have skills and experience in a particular area of clinical practice.
Although they are not registered practitioners they have a high level of skill through their experience and training. They take on more responsibilities than health care assistants, under the supervision of registered colleagues in a range of different settings.
One of the most popular ways to become an AP is to complete a foundation degree (or equivalent) in health care, which involves a combination of study and supervised practice. Interested candidates should speak to their employer, or check the NHS jobs website for trainee assistant practitioner / trainee associate practitioner vacancies. In most cases they would be paid at band 3 level whilst training with the opportunity to work at band 4 level once qualified and once recruited into a role.
Assistant Practitioners may be able to use their foundation degree as APL (Accreditation for Prior Learning) and apply for a shortened undergraduate degree programme such as a nursing degree. Individual universities will be able to provide more information.