Nursing associate role offers development opportunities for HCAs
The RCN has welcomed proposals to create a new nursing support role in England
The plans, announced by the Department of Health late last year, will see a new role created to bridge the gap between health care assistants (HCAs) and registered nurses. It’s proposed that staff trained through this route will learn on the job via an apprenticeship leading to a foundation degree.
RCN Chief Executive Janet Davies said: "This recognises the value of health care assistants and is an initiative which will allow them to develop their skills. Part of this is about enabling people in unregulated positions, supporting registered nurses, to access training via a clear structure, and this is something we have long campaigned for."
It is hoped nursing associates will release time for nurses to use their specialist training to focus on clinical duties and take more of a lead in decisions about patient care. The Government has said it will also look at what opportunities there are for staff in this role to become registered nurses through either a degree level nurse apprenticeship or a shortened nursing degree at university.
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