Frequently asked questions

If your question is unanswered, please get in touch by emailing us at contact@joinourdorset.nhs.uk.

Nurses work as part of a team and provide direct patient care. They work in a variety of settings, including hospital wards, operating theatres, clinics, doctors’ surgeries and patients’ homes. Nurse apprentices will work in a main place of work, undertake study and also have a variety of clinical placements during their apprenticeship.

Yes! All applicants are welcome.

For more information on opportunities for existing healthcare staff, please speak with your education department.

Dorset is offering two fields of nurse training as an apprenticeship – mental health nursing and adult nursing.

Yes, upon completion of the apprenticeship you will be awarded a BSc (Honours) in adult or mental health nursing and will be able to register as a nurse.  This will be exactly the same degree as anyone attending university full time.  It is the way that this degree is delivered that is different as apprentices will be based in the work place as well as studying with a university.

Apprentices will be released by their employer to study part-time with a university and will train in a range of practice placement settings. Apprentices will study with a university that is a Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) approved education provider and will be expected to achieve the same standards as any other student nurse.

Registered Nurse Degree Apprentices won’t have to pay tuition fees.  The cost of the apprenticeship will be paid by employers.

Applications and interviews will be a part of determining who is successful in gaining an apprenticeship within a health organisation in Dorset.

A full recruitment and selection process will take place across Dorset.

When completing your application form please refer to the job profile.

All qualifications must be detailed on the application form – the subject, the grade and the year. Without this clear information we will not be able to process your application. Any pending qualifications must also be included – Any A-Level / Level 3 or higher qualifications that are pending need to be achieved by the start of the programme in September 2024.

Yes! As well as working as part of the team delivering care at your home base, you will also experience placement opportunities at various locations where you’ll develop the skills to become a registered nurse.

In addition to your usual place of work apprentices will have placements over the four years which will be in a variety of settings. Placements will be in blocks over the course of the programme and will be in a variety of locations across Dorset potentially during mornings, evenings, weekends and bank holidays so it is essential that you are able to access these places.

The apprenticeship is a full time role which is 37.5 hours a week in the NHS.  During the apprenticeship there will be a requirement to experience essential all round care to meet patient needs. Part of the apprenticeship work in a healthcare role could include a variety of shift patterns and may include day or night shifts and weekends and bank holidays.

Your main place of work and placements will be across Dorset, therefore you will be expected to be able to travel to these various locations at a variety of times and days of the week.

The apprenticeship will take four years to complete.

There is no upper age limit to start a nurse apprenticeship but you must be aged 18 or over at the start of the programme in September 2024.

Qualified nurses can undertake nursing roles in both primary and secondary care in many areas of work and in many clinical areas. Nursing can follow a career path in:

  • Research
  • Education
  • Leadership

With further experience, future careers can include advanced practice nursing, nurse education and mentoring, and healthcare management, such as ward sister or lead nurse.

Yes it can. The University recognises that many entrants may have already studied some subjects at the level required.  A learner may be admitted to the programme with credit provided that they can demonstrate that they have met the intended learning outcomes of the relevant unit(s) at the required level. All successful applicants will be invited to claim for any exemptions prior to starting the course. Your claim will then be assessed and exemptions awarded as appropriate.

In the case of students who have undertaken the Trainee Nurse Apprenticeship (TNA) the content of the TNA is mapped against the requirements and structure of the RNDA. This is likely to lead to exemption from a whole level / full-time year of study as well as from individual units of study. This will normally result in entry to Level 5 of the RNDA with advanced standing.

Yes, full time staff are entitled to annual leave days and an average of 8 public holidays. Your employer can tell you more about this.

All annual leave will need to be agreed through the line manager and taken within specific times of the apprenticeship programme. (for example; not during placement time).  There may be requirement to work on some public holidays with leave taken at an alternative time. Any prior booked leave should be discussed if invited to interview.

This varies on your employer.

There are a number of staff benefits open to NHS employees including; pensions, staff discount at certain outlets, access to some corporate memberships, student discount card for apprentices and many more.

Vaccines for health and care staff (NMC)

The Code and our standards make clear that professionals have a responsibility to maintain their own level of health. And that they should take all reasonable personal precautions to avoid potential health risks to colleagues and people receiving care. All nurses, midwives and nursing associates need to be confident that measures are in place where they work to manage any risk of transmission, and they need to take appropriate steps themselves to reduce risks and prioritise the safety of people in their care.

It is a requirement that all RNDAs meet the occupational health requirements to complete the programme.

All staff should be up to date with their routine immunisations e.g. tetanus, diphtheria, polio and MMR.

Other vaccinations that will be required or recommended (unless medically exempt) are:

  • Hepatitis B
  • BCG vaccine for tuberculosis (TB)
  • Influenza

Working in healthcare, you are more likely to be exposed to infections such as COVID-19 and flu. You can pass on these viruses to family, colleagues, and patients that we care for, many of whom may be at increased risk.

As with all vaccinations protection from previous jabs reduces over time, ensuring you receive your seasonal jabs will top up your immunity against these viruses. As healthcare staff we should do everything we can do to reduce our own personal risk of becoming ill from COVID-19 and flu.

You can find out more information and view all Dorset vaccination clinic details on the COVID-19 vaccination service webpages.

Dorset are committed to developing opportunities through the apprenticeship route. Following successful completion of the Registered Nurse Degree Apprenticeship programme we would endeavour to find you employment in Dorset’s health and care services. There is an expectation that successful applicants will remain in Dorset for a further two years following successful completion of the apprenticeship programme.

Ready to start your career in nursing? 

If you’re interested in finding a career with the NHS in Dorset, take a look at the opportunities we currently have available.

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