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Healthcare Support Workers and Nursing Apprenticeship routes

Healthcare Support Workers

As a Healthcare Support Worker (HCSW), you will be a valued member of your team. Your focus will be on keeping patients at the centre of all we do, providing high quality care and living our Trust values: Together – Safe | Kind | Excellent.

Our Healthcare Support Workers fall into three groups: 

  • Healthcare Support Workers (HCSW) – this is the largest group of clinical support workers. HCSWs provide assistance to nurses and doctors in wards and clinics across the Trust.
  • Theatre Support Workers (TSW) –  work alongside theatre staff before, during and after operations.
  • Maternity Care Assistants (MCA) – work in the Rosie Maternity Hospital. The main focus of their role is around helping women before and after giving birth.

Whichever group you work in, you will live up to and promote our culture of compassionate care, built on care, compassion, competence, communication, courage and commitment.

Progression to a Band 3 Healthcare Support Worker is available within the Trust by completion of required competencies. To find out more please contact

Although it is hard work, you will be part of a supportive team. Our hospital could not run without our healthcare support workers. At CUH we work hard to ensure that your role is rewarding and valued.

To find out more about what to expect from the Healthcare Support Worker role you can explore the links at the top of this page. It is important to have a good understanding of this role as it is also the starting point of an apprenticeship should you choose one.

HCA with patient HCSW standing with patient
HCA with patient HCSW standing with patient

Nursing Associate Apprenticeship

The registered nursing associate (RNA) is a new role within the nursing team. Nursing associates work with healthcare support workers and registered nurses to deliver care for patients. It can also be a stepping stone to becoming a registered nurse. Nursing associates work across all four fields of nursing: adult, children’s, mental health, and learning disabilities. Your skills and responsibilities will vary, depending on the clinical area you work in.

This apprenticeship lasts 24 months and will lead to a band 4 registered nursing associate role within your chosen area of practice at CUH. You will qualify with a level 5 Foundation Degree and the Trust will support you should you wish to undertake further study to become a registered nurse.

Upon commencement of your university place, the breakdown of theory and practice is as follows;

- 22.5 hours per week will be either at university/online study undertaking theory or on placement undertaking practical learning.

- 15 hours per week will be rostered onto shifts in your home area

The trust has a dedicated team of nurse educators who will support you with both your clinical and academic workloads and will work with you to ensure you get the most out of your time as an apprentice with us.

For further information on the Apprenticeship Nursing Associate route click here

Urszula Lato, Nursing Apprentice