A university in Wales is to launch a fee-paying undergraduate nursing course later this year in a move that it is claiming is a first for the country.
The adult nursing course, set up by Wrexham Glyndwr University in north Wales, will include placements provided by five NHS trusts in England, which is also thought to represent the first time organisations have come together across the countries’ borders to provide a nursing degree.
“We are thrilled to have these partners on board and would like to thank them for joining with us to bring nurse education to a new level”
Wrexham Glyndwr University used to provide pre-registration nurse training until its funding was cut by local commissioners in 2013 who wanted to reduce the number of organisations delivering training in the region.
Its final group of funded student nurses graduated in 2016 and since then it has been developing its “new-look” course, which will launch in September 2017.
Under the new arrangements, students will have to pay for their own day-to-day costs, as well as £9,000 annual tuition fees.
Previously, the university trained between 55 and 120 student nurses a year, but those behind the new course said it was not possible to comment on the number of students starting in September as it would depend on recruitment.
Trainees will be offered a range of placements in both England and Wales, with private providers and NHS trusts.
These will include Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust, the Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.
“The course offers fantastic career prospects and the opportunity to work with some of the best health organisations in the country”
Other placements will take place at Wrexham’s Pendine Park care organisation, Nightingale House Hospice, Spire Yale Hospital, and Shropshire’s Ellesmere Community Nursing Home.
Programme leader Christine O’Grady told Nursing Times the team behind the new course believed strongly in continuing to provide pre-registration nurse education to help reduce local staff shortages.
“The course offers fantastic career prospects and the opportunity to work with some of the best health organisations in the country,” she said.
“We will be offering placements with these trusts and hospitals, as well as third sector and private care bodies, so it’s a very hands-on degree that will that will prepare students to become registered adult nurses,” she said.
“We are thrilled to have these partners on board and would like to thank them for joining with us to bring nurse education to a new level,” she added.
The course will be formally launched at an event on the university’s main campus from 10am-2pm on 10 May.