New Skills Boost course guarantees jobs in health care

A new course, which launched this week, will provide people in the region with a direct progression route into a health care support worker role.

The three-week Skills Boost for Health Care course, delivered in partnership by Edinburgh College and NHS Lothian, is designed to equip people with the skills they need to become a health care support worker within the NHS and aims to provide employment opportunities for people in the Lothians who may have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

All course participants have undergone a values-based interview process with the College and NHS and will study a three-week intensive course to prepare them for the workplace.

The course includes college-based and NHS-based learning and will take a multi-disciplinary, measured and meaningful approach to help launch participants into a career in health care. Subjects will include: Professionalism, reflection, legislation; Infection Control; Health and Safety; First Aid; Basic Life Support (Adult); and Public Protection. Participants will also learn about the career pathways available to them within the NHS.

The first cohort of future health care support workers began the three-week course on Monday 19 April 2021 and upon successful completion and compulsory employment checks, will undertake their new roles from Monday 10 May 2021.

Edinburgh College Head of Health, Wellbeing and Social Science Anne-Marie Sturrock said: “We are excited to launch the Skills Boost for Health Care course in collaboration with NHS Lothian. The course not only gives students an opportunity to learn new and valuable skills, it also guarantees them a health care support role within the NHS – providing education and employment hand-in-hand.

“Supporting the NHS and addressing unemployment in the region are key drivers behind the development of this course and partnership delivery. I hope that this will be the first step in successful careers in healthcare for all of our participants.” 

NHS Lothian Executive Director for Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Healthcare Professionals Alex McMahon said:

“We are always very keen to encourage and support the development of new routes to bring prospective health care professionals into NHS Lothian and we are delighted to be working with Edinburgh College to deliver this particular course.

“NHS Lothian aims to support staff to provide high quality care that is safe, effective and person-centred for every person every time. We know that whatever the future holds, our most valuable resource is our staff. It’s their enthusiasm, expertise, and commitment to care that ensures we deliver that high-quality care.”

Following the completion of cohort 1, cohort 2 will launch in May 2021. Find out more. The course is funded by the Young Persons Guarantee and the National Transition Training Fund.