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UCAS updates job profile that branded nurses ‘support’ for doctors

A job profile that described nurses as ‘support’ for doctors has been updated by the University and College Admissions Service (UCAS) after online backlash last week.  

UCAS had said nurses ‘provide support to doctors and other medical staff, take blood and urine samples’ in its online description.  

However, it has since updated the job profile to describe nurses as ‘the indispensable frontline of healthcare, the world over’ and ‘the most important of our health services’.  

The new job profile is more detailed, covering why students should study nursing, what it is like to study it and the careers graduates can go into with a nursing degree.  

The change has been welcomed by the online nursing community including The Student Nurse Project, which tweeted: ‘Hopefully this new profile will help encourage the next generation of nurses’.


The original job description, which has since been replaced, was brought to light last week by Professor of Nursing at the University of York Paul Galdas who urged nurses to ‘collectively challenge UCAS on their current job profile for nursing’.  

‘Compare and contrast the description of nursing from UCAS and the NMC,’ chief executive of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) Andrea Sutcliffe added, commenting on the job profile on Twitter.   

Also reacting to the since-updated portrayal of nurses, chief nurse for Health Education England Mark Radford said he had 'joined with many other senior nurses across the system and have co-signed a letter to UCAS to offer our expertise.' 

Following the complaints online, UCAS said it took down the profile and worked with nursing experts to update it.  

A spokeperson from UCAS told Nursing in Practice: ‘We have recently updated our subject guide for Nursing, and many other subjects, to provide a better representation of the career for students.

‘We are working with the Royal College of Nursing and the NHS nursing recruitment team to ensure the job profile is also updated to better reflect the work done by nurses across the country each day. This is part of our ongoing commitment to support recruitment of nurses.’

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