Increasing the number of nursing apprentices is key to fulfilling the ambitions of the NHS Long-Term Plan, England’s chief nursing officer has said.
According to Ruth May, England’s top nurse, boosting the number of nursing apprentices is ‘one important way we can achieve that goal, and as we deliver on our NHS Long Term Plan we want local health service employers to ramp up the number of opportunities they offer to people in their areas.’
The new recruits are given a ‘triple package’ of on-the-job training, free tuition and an annual wage, meaning people of all ages have a chance to earn while they learn to provide care.
‘I’m a massive fan of Apprenticeships, and as the former Apprenticeships Minister, who introduced Nursing Apprenticeships, I’m thrilled to see so many people on Apprenticeships in the NHS,’ said Health Secretary Matt Hancock.
‘Apprenticeships are a fantastic way for people to kickstart their career in healthcare and offer a flexible, alternative route into nursing where you can earn as you learn. Boosting the number of apprentices is an important step towards delivering our commitment to have 50,000 more nurses by 2024/25, and I want to see every Trust doing their part to help us achieve that.’
The NHS has already invested over 50% of its £200 million apprenticeship levy back into creating training opportunities during 2019/20 – significantly more than in the previous year.
‘During the Year of the Nurse and Midwife, there has never been a better time to become a nurse, so I would encourage anyone looking for an exciting and rewarding career to become a nurse apprentice,’ added Ms May.