Skills for Care launches nursing associates guide to help employers embed new role

Oonagh Smyth cropped

Skills for Care has launched a new guide to support the deployment of nursing associates in adult social care.

‘An employer’s guide to the deployment of qualified registered nursing associates in social care settings’ will support social care employers in deploying the new role of nursing associate within their organisation, and will increase understanding of the role of the registered nursing associate among employers, commissioners and registered nursing associates.

The guidance will provide care providers and commissioners with a more detailed understanding of what to consider when thinking of including the role in different social care settings, how to consider the role in light of integrated services and partnerships in a long term plan, and how to create a workforce plan to assess how a nursing associate can add value to their team.

Additionally, the guide outlines key regulatory frameworks which employers must understand when implementing this role in a social care setting.

Oonagh Smyth (pictured), CEO of Skills for Care, said: “I am delighted that our registered nursing associate deployment guidance has been published and I am certain this will provide invaluable support for organisations looking to deploy registered nursing associates within their team, to ensure the best value from this role for the organisation, the registered nursing associate, and the people they support.

“Skills for Care has championed the introduction of the registered nursing associate role and we are thrilled to see the positive impact this role has had for many teams across social care.
“Through increased awareness and understanding of the role of registered nursing associate we can encourage more nursing associates to consider a rewarding, person-centred career in social care.”

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For commissioners, the guidance also encourages local dialogue regarding commissioning of nursing services and workforce redesign.

Included within the document are examples of the role in practice which are designed to assist employers and commissioners in understanding how nursing associates may be deployed. This highlights how the scope of practice can differ depending on the team and situation.

The aim of the guidance is to increase awareness of the registered nursing associate role across all relevant parties – employers, commissioners and registered nursing associates. The guide intends to improve understanding of what the nursing associate role is, how the nursing associate role fits into social care organisations, and the differences between a registered nursing associate and a registered nurse and how these two roles can best work together.

The guidance also highlights the value that the registered nursing associate role brings to social care teams and aims to encourage nursing associates to choose a career in social care.

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Sarah Clarke

The author Sarah Clarke