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Assistant Practitioners: the journey through education Sue Cluroe The University of Northampton.

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Presentation on theme: "Assistant Practitioners: the journey through education Sue Cluroe The University of Northampton."— Presentation transcript:

1 Assistant Practitioners: the journey through education Sue Cluroe The University of Northampton

2 What is an Assistant Practitioner? A worker who competently delivers health and social care to and for people. They have a required level of knowledge and skill beyond that of the traditional healthcare assistant or support worker –Skills for Health, 2009

3 Key early issues Possible registration Quality to meet The University standards and potentially a future professional body Consistency across Northamptonshire Link with Skills for Health /Care competencies Trust involvement in content It was agreed to link with the University of Northampton Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care

4 Basis for the Assistant Practitioner programme Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care was first validated in 2007 The programme lasts 2 years and is modular in design This model was first used to develop a FdSc in adult Palliative Care (with LOROS), The Acute and Community pathway started in 2010 Other pathways were developed later

5 What does this mean? The student is an employee and seconded to the University for the teaching component They are subject to all the normal employee regulations regarding shift patterns, mandatory skills, annual leave etc. They will have an allocated mentor who will provide a level of supervision and assessment via a portfolio in practice They have a Code of Conduct developed by Skills for Health specifically for APs and support workers Content reflects the needs of patients/clients and is regularly reviewed to ensure content is current

6 Entry criteria The University entry criteria is: –‘A’ levels, Access course or NVQ level 3 (or equivalent qualification) –English GCSE at grade C or above (or equivalent) The employer may ask for extra e.g. –Experience in health and/or social care All candidates are interviewed jointly by the employer and the University. The interview includes a literacy test which must be passed

7 Assessment The type of learner was explored It was felt that these would be practical people who had been away from study The range of assessments needed to reflect this as well as the needs of the service Methods of assessment include –Presentations –Written assignments –Reflective accounts –Case studies –Examination

8 At the end of the course? Assistant Practitioners work usually at Band 4 They are not currently registered but do have a Code of Conduct (Skills for Health) They have a knowledge base which underpins their work They may wish to continue to study and a top-up BSc Health and Social Care is available at the University A few may decide to move into a profession (eg. nursing, midwifery), although a recent survey of 49 students shows the AP students as wishing to remain in that role

9 Support for their course Mentors – need to be identified and prepared Clinical skills – Placement audits Time sheets Mandatory training Enhanced DBS Service user involvement Access to IT Uniforms

10 Positives of the course Students get the full support available at the University including ASSIST Guaranteed level of study overseen by the Quality Academic Partnerships Social Entrepreneurship Students gain confidence over the 2 years and feel able to contribute positively in their new role

11 Challenges of the course Confidence of the students Small numbers Ensuring students from disparate settings all get what they require Lack of understanding of the role by some practitioners, leading to inconsistency of support / role

12 Future issues Career progression Care Certificate Framework due to be fully implemented in March 2015 Will AP’s be registered in the future?

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