Cumbria Crack

NHS Trust growing their workforce

Molly Dargue

The NHS in north Cumbria is supporting and developing their own workforce by enabling existing staff to grow and progress within their careers.

21-year-old Molly Dargue from Penrith began her career with North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust when she was 18 starting in support service roles before taking the plunge to become a Health Care Assistant.

As part of getting ready for the role as a Health Care Assistant Molly undertook a 12 week programme called the care certificate. The care certificate is the part of the foundations of building a healthcare career to get employees ready for work.

Molly talks about what the care certificate involved: “The care certificate is a 12 week programme, where we learnt the basics such as personal care, rules and regulations and moving and handling techniques.

“I also had to complete online e-Learning and submit a written reflective account to gain my care certificate qualification.

“Completing the care certificate gave me the confidence to do my job and was a good way to be introduced into health care.”

Debbie Sargent, Practice Development Lead – Clinical Skills at NCIC said: “The care certificate is the start of a career within healthcare and gives people the foundations of the skills they will need to care for people. They can then build on these fundamental skills by undertaking further training and experience and ultimately progress through to degree programmes in healthcare related subjects.

“As a Trust it is important for us that all of our staff are given access to training to enable them to provide high quality care. We also want to support our staff with career progression and development without them having to leave the area to find those opportunities. Ward and community managers can support those healthcare assistants that have the ambition to become registered professionals to achieve their goals such as with the likes of Molly.”

The Trust supports all colleagues with their development, including those starting out in healthcare. Completing the care certificate is the first step someone who is interested in working in NHS healthcare roles should do.

Molly has now commenced her registered nursing degree apprenticeship via a 3 year secondment with the Trust.

Molly said: “I love being a Health Care Assistant, I enjoy meeting local people and providing care to our patients at home. I’m able to do wound care, take bloods, administer insulin, catheter care, check patient’s skin and ensure our patients are happy and looked after at home. My job also involves a lot of admin, such as referring to different services such as podiatry or social services.”

As soon as Molly began working as a Health Care Assistant she knew this type of role was for her and was supported to develop herself to undertake a nursing degree.

Molly adds: “I’ve just started the registered nurse degree apprenticeship which is a 3 year secondment with the trust. I study at the Open University 7.5 hours a week and will complete multiple placements during my 3 years of study.

“My 1st placement will be at West Cumberland Hospital for 8 weeks, I will work with a qualified mentor to develop my skills as a student nurse. At the end of my study I will qualify as a Registered Nurse.  When I qualify I plan to return to my base as a Community Staff Nurse for the Penrith District Nurses.”

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