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Healthcare Apprentices nurse a degree of success


Two former healthcare assistants who work at Compton Care in Wolverhampton have celebrated after completing their Nursing Associate Foundation Degree Apprenticeships at the University of Wolverhampton.

The Higher Apprenticeship supports the introduction of the Nursing Associate role in England which bridges the gap between healthcare support workers and registered nurses to deliver hands-on, person-centred care. They are members of the nursing “family” who gain a Nursing Associate Foundation Degree awarded by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

The role was introduced to help build the capacity of the nursing workforce and the delivery of high-quality care, while supporting nurses and wider multidisciplinary teams to focus on more complex clinical duties.

The University now has over 200 Nursing Associate Apprentices working on the frontline during the COVID-19 pandemic in a variety of healthcare roles for NHS Trusts and Care Homes across the region and further afield.

Hayley Webber-Waterfield and Jodie Webb recently completed the two year Foundation Degree Apprenticeship to become the care charity's first Nursing Associates, now qualified to support the Wolverhampton hospice's nursing team by administering medication and tending to wounds.

Hayley said: "I decided to become a Nursing Associate because I wanted to further my education and career.

"The training has enabled me to remain at Compton Care over the last two years as an Apprentice and therefore continue to support myself and my family financially. I wanted to combine my compassion for others, experience, knowledge and education into a role where I could bring quality care to patients and their loved ones.

"During the training, I spent one day each week at the University of Wolverhampton where we I had lectures covering topics such as principles of nursing care. The remainder of my time was spent on Compton Care’s inpatient unit where I received fantastic support from my colleagues who helped me achieve my new role.

"The Apprenticeship has highlighted nursing care is not just about having clinical skills but also about having good communication skills to be an effective team member as well as an advocate for patients and their loved ones, making sure they are always heard and remain the very centre of our care."

The pair have spent time on placement within various care settings – including supporting district nurses and working with the tissue viability team at Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust.

The training included hands-on experience and learning in the classroom – with graduates being officially registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Jodie said: “I have always wanted to be a nurse and this opportunity has enabled me to learn new skills and become one step closer to the next stage in my career.

"Being a Nursing Associate at Compton Care and the support that I have received from everyone working on our In-patient unit and also within other departments has given me new confidence and knowledge.

"I work with an amazing team and coming to work each day to provide care for patients here at Compton Care is a pleasure."

Carly Manning, Modern Matron Planned Care at Compton Care, said: “Since qualifying, our Nursing Associates have worked on our inpatient unit, supporting our Registered Nurse role in providing high quality palliative and end of life care.

“From our perspective, this role has really opened up new opportunities for progression in our workforce, which can only be good news for the service we are able to provide to our community.”

Michele Roberts, Head of the Apprenticeship Hub at the University, said: “The Nursing Associate Apprenticeship programme has benefited from the pilot programme the University operated with a number of partner organisations during the initial set up.

“We have worked extensively with employers in building a programme that meets their requirements, Health Education England (HEE) and Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC) requirements as well as ensuring the appropriate support mechanisms are in place for our Apprentices along the way.” 

Anyone employed in the healthcare sector and interested in studying for a Nursing Associate qualification should check out the Apprenticeship Hub website.

The University offers Higher and Degree Apprenticeships in Chartered Management (CMDA), Senior Leader Master’s Degree Apprenticeship, Chartered Surveyor, Building Control, Chartered Legal Executive, Manufacturing Engineer, Design & Development Engineer, Civil Engineering, Nursing Associates Foundation Degree, Social Work, Registered Nurse Degree Apprenticeship, Postgraduate Teaching, Digital and Technology Solutions Professional and Healthcare Science Practitioner (Respiratory & Sleep Physiology or Cardiac Physiology) and Laboratory Science Degree Apprenticeships.

Nearly 800 apprentices are already studying for Higher and Degree level qualifications and the University works with over 350 employers.

For more information contact the Corporate Communications Team 01902 322736/518647 or out of office hours on 07973 335112 or email:



For more information please contact the Corporate Communications Team.

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