Healthcare Support Worker Development

Lynda Apkan female healthcare support worker

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HCSW Development Stories

With the Healthcare Support Worker Development (HCSWD) programme, you learn on the job to become a Healthcare Assistant / Support Worker (known as HCA and HCSW).

We’ve successfully helped thousands start their healthcare career with the NHS, with some continuing their journey by studying to become Nurses outside of the programme, utilising support from their local NHS Trusts.

Discover some of our HCSW graduates stories below.

HCSW Graduate Stories

Letitia Taylor female student nurse

Letitia Taylor joined our Healthcare Support Worker Development (HCSWD) programme in 2015 with Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust. She has gone on to study Child Nursing at the University of Derby.

Letitia’s Story

“In October 2015, I joined NHS Professionals (NHSP) as a trainee Healthcare Support Worker (HCSW). As a trainee, I started on a respiratory ward at Nottingham City Hospital. I really enjoyed being a part of a specialised team as there were plenty of learning opportunities which enabled me to develop my clinical skills, including Trust courses for bladder scanning, ECGS and venepuncture.

The ward manager and staff were incredibly supportive, working to ensure that once I completed my programme, I had the skills and confidence to work in most areas within the Trust.”

Completing the HCSW development programme

“Once I had completed my programme and achieved my Care Certificate, I was offered permanent contracts for 2 specialised wards. However, I decided to work flexibly with NHSP to explore new areas and I’m really glad that I did as I found my passion for Paediatrics.

Working flexibly between different wards has allowed me to develop my communication skills and develop my knowledge within numerous acute areas. NHSP has always been very supportive throughout, including any queries or training opportunities I wanted to undertake.”

Becoming a Covid Vaccinator

“When the pandemic hit, I thought it would be really hard working within the hospital but the support from staff and NHSP was excellent. They offered lots of support around mental health, wellbeing as well as risk assessments for safety. As NHSP had prepared me for the next year ahead, I decided I could do more and opted to support the mass vaccination team as a Band 4 Vaccinator.”

Starting University for Nursing

“In September 2021, I started university to study BSC Hons Child Nursing at the University of Derby. This is my dream course, and it’s truly amazing as I never thought I would have been able to get to university.

Initially, I did have concerns about how I was going to finance going to university as a parent with two children. I was able to put these concerns aside when NHSP advised me I could still work flexibly around my studies. This really influenced my decision on whether I could attend university. I’m still working closely with NHSP and doing shifts around my studies.

Through all the experience and support I’ve had through the HCSWD programme, my Trust, NHSP, I’ve started to make my dream a reality.”

Advice to new healthcare professionals

“My advice to all new starters is to take every learning opportunity provided. The Trust is brilliant on supporting new Healthcare Support Workers and you really will be made part of the team. The HCSW development programme provides the first step into healthcare, opening doors to lots of career paths, where you get to decide how you want to progress.”

Lynda Apkan female healthcare support worker

Lynda Akpan joined our HCSW development programme in Mental Health with our partnered NHS Trust, Southern Health Foundation Trust.

Starting a career in healthcare

“It was always my dream to pursue a career within the healthcare sector but having started my career journey from a different sector meant that a breakthrough into the healthcare sector would be challenging. So, it was a no-brainer when I first heard of the HCSWD programme, I immediately realised that it was practically the best medium for me to transition into the health sector to pursue the career of my dream.”

Becoming a Healthcare Support Worker

“As expected, I was not disappointed as the HCSWD programme was well structured and focused on providing trainees with the fundamental theoretical and practical knowledge required to be a successful Healthcare Support Worker as well as exposure to career opportunities to explore at the completion of the program. The hospital placement aspect of the programme is excellent, as this exposes trainees to real-life experience and the opportunity to learn on the job.

The 6-month HCSWD programme gave me all the confidence that I needed to perform my day-to-day responsibilities as this is key for working in a dynamic environment like the NHS, where each day comes with different challenges.”

Pursuing my Nursing career

“I am now a qualified Mental Health Support Worker and currently pursuing my dream to qualify as a nurse, this has only been a reality because of the HCSWD programme.

Without any reservation, I will recommend the NHS Professionals training to anyone who is interested in pursuing a career in healthcare, as this programme is certain to provide the knowledge and tools required to have a successful career.”

Letitia Taylor female student nurse

Michelle Brown completed our HCSW development programme in Acute at Margate QEQM Hospital for East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust. She had a complete change of career from Finance and loves the variety being a Healthcare Support Worker (HCSW) brings.

Michelle’s entry into the NHS

"I wanted to join the HCSW development programme to get my foot in the door with the NHS and use it as a stepping stone to further development. I love the fact that no two days are the same and you don't know what the day may bring.

The whole programme has been varied and I would definitely recommend to those who would like a career in care. Personally, I have achieved the recognised Care Certificate and work full-time in a job I love."

Thoroughly engaged with the programme, Michelle completed her hours quickly resulting in her placement ward offering a full-time contract, which she accepted, and she works additional bank shifts to support the Trust. We’re proud of Michelle’s hard work and we’re excited to see how her career progresses within the NHS.

Looking to start your career with the NHS?

We regularly run our HCSWD programmes throughout the year at several client Trusts. If you are interested in registering to one of our programmes, simply submit your interest today.


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