From education to employment

Spire Healthcare expands its nursing apprenticeship programme


Applications have opened for 25 new roles

Spire runs one of the largest nursing apprenticeship programmes in England

Spire’s apprentice nurses benefit the broader healthcare system – including the NHS

Spire Healthcare is expanding its nursing apprenticeship programme with 25 new roles across 16 of Spire’s English hospitals. Spire’s nurse degree apprenticeship is a four-year programme leading to a BSc in Adult Nursing.

The 25 new apprentices will enjoy remote studying with The University of Sunderland, as well as placements in a wide range of nursing settings such as wards, outpatients, operating theatres, hospices, A&E and more. By developing new knowledge, skills and thinking whilst completing their degree, Spire’s nursing apprentices will gain a broad experience of healthcare in England and be well-prepared for their future nursing career. The benefit of the degree apprenticeship route is the ability to earn while learning, with a starting salary of approximately £21,000 depending on previous experience.

Applications are open now, with successful applicants starting the programme in mid-December 2023.

Spire currently has 160 nurse apprentices enrolled in an existing degree programme. Some of these apprentices are due to graduate in December, delivering critically needed nursing skills directly into the UK healthcare sector. Spire is currently training and supporting approximately 500 apprentices across a wide range of clinical and non-clinical specialties – this represents some five percent of Spire’s total permanent workforce. In 2022, Spire introduced a new apprenticeship programme in cardiac physiology, and is looking at other expansion options.

Professor Lisa Grant, Group Clinical Director and Chief Nurse of Spire Healthcare said:

“We are incredibly proud to launch our 2023 nurse degree apprenticeship training programme. Our four-year partnership with The University of Sunderland has already provided hundreds of school leavers, university graduates and people looking to retrain, the opportunity to earn while they learn, and we’re pleased to be extending this programme even further.

“While national shortages in healthcare professionals are still a concern for all healthcare providers in England, continued investment in our nursing apprenticeship programme – one of the largest of a single organisation in England – is aimed at building a talent pipeline for our business and the broader healthcare sector. Importantly, this programme contributes to the sustainability of the whole healthcare sector in the UK, because many of our graduates will go on to careers in the NHS and elsewhere – something we encourage as a net contributor to society.

“Nurses have a vital role in delivering care and support to patients while in and out of hospital and this apprenticeship programme helps introduce more people into the profession.”

Sue Brent, Head of the School or Nursing and Health Sciences at The University of Sunderland, said: “I am delighted to see the partnership between Spire Healthcare and the University of Sunderland going from strength to strength.

“The Registered Nurse Degree Apprenticeship plays a major role in developing future talent for Spire and the healthcare system as a whole. The programme is delivered nationally within the Spire Healthcare group and offers greater flexibility than a traditional degree for the nursing apprentices.

“In February this year, it was wonderful to see Spire Healthcare named Employer of the Year during our University of Sunderland and MTC Training Awards. This demonstrates Spire’s commitment to supporting their apprentices during their programme of learning.”

To be eligible to join Spire’s 2023 nursing apprenticeship programme, applicants should be available to start on 11 December 2023 and meet the following criteria:

  • be a Health Care assistant with a minimum of either:
  • NVQ L3 Health and Social Care
  • BTEC L3 ext. diploma
  • L3 Advanced Apprenticeship
  • HE Diploma (access to HE- Nursing)
  • have GCSE Maths and English qualifications at a minimum of Grade C or equivalent and;
  • have 548 hours in supervised clinical practice.

More information about the programme and links to the application form can be found here.

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