This site is intended for health professionals only

New nursing course launched to tackle NHS skills shortage

A new fast-track nursing qualification is launching in Sheffield to address skills shortages in the healthcare workforce.

The course at The Sheffield College, designed in part by Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, is aimed at helping students without A-levels get into university-level nursing programmes.

The Access to Nursing (Health Professions) Higher Education Diploma is a one-year course taught by NHS professionals in both the classroom and workplace.

Applicants must have at least a C grade in GCSE English and maths to be accepted on the course, which is also suitable for students who want to go straight to work in the healthcare sector.

The course will cover topics like mental health, system physiology and principles of care, on which students will be assessed through coursework and exams.

Professor Hilary Chapman, chief nurse at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are delighted to have played a leading role in developing this course in partnership with The Sheffield College.

“Our Trust has a successful track record in training, nurturing and developing a strong and effective nurse workforce for the future. This is a vital step forward in ensuring that the nursing workforce of the future has the appropriate level of skills, knowledge and ability to meet the rising demand for healthcare services.”

As an access course, adult learners will be able to gain credits recognised by colleges, universities and employers and some students may also be eligible to apply for a 19+ Advanced Learner Loan.

Lesley Rowlands, head of learning for Health, Education and Care at The Sheffield College, said: “Access courses provide a great opportunity for adults to return to the classroom and fulfil their career ambitions. NHS professionals will teach on the course, and provide the knowledge and expertise that the nursing workforce of the future needs.”

Paul Corcoran, chief executive of The Sheffield College, added: “This is an exciting example of how we can work together with large employers to design and deliver innovative courses that address their essential training and skills requirements.”