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Nursing Support Proffessionals

Nursing Support

Healthcare Support Workers, Healthcare Assistants and Register Nursing Assistants 

Our valued healthcare support specialists play a vital role, caring for patients alongside our nurses and other clinicians, day-in, day-out. 

Nursing Support Professionals with Patient
Nursing Staff on the ward

Thousands of people join the NHS as Healthcare Assistants (often known as HCAs) and Healthcare Support Workers (HSWs) from a variety of backgrounds.


Many of our colleagues have joined from school or college, often with no formal healthcare qualifications or experience, while others have taken this caring route later in life, while some have joined the NHS having previously worked in social care, such as care homes.  

Our five Trusts often run special campaigns, Open Days, and recruitment events for these jobs. Colleagues work on our busy wards, in outpatients clinics and in community settings. 


New career development paths, with full training and learning and professional qualifications, mean you can also progress from these Band 2 and Band 3 roles to become a Registered Nursing Associate (RNA), with highly developed clinical skills and responsibilities. 

Nursing Staff at work
Nursing Staff on the ward

And there is now the opportunity to take work-based route to becoming a full-qualified Registered Nurse. The Royal College of Nursing has some useful information on the different career paths – for those who want to take up further learning – here 

Many of our HSWs and HCAs have been a valuable part of the NHS for 20+ years, working with nurses, doctors and supporting patients’ care and recovery. Other people decided to progress through the relatively new RNA role, which involves university-level training programmes, on further onward.

You can be sure that your work will be valued and valuable in all nursing support roles. Some of our current colleagues explain why they enjoy making a difference in the videos below. 

Ana de Stefano, Band 3 Healthcare Assistant, Kingston 

You can find out more about what’s involved on the NHS website.

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