National Skills Academy for Health Excellence Centres
The National Skills Academy for Health is developing a network of Excellence Centres across England to bring together employers from the NHS, independent and voluntary sectors to coordinate and implement high quality skills programmes for support workers.
Although there are more than half a million people working in vital support roles across the nation's healthcare workforce, the availability of high quality training for healthcare support workers has often been inconsistent, underfunded and difficult to access.
Now, with significant investment from the Department for Business Innovation and Skills, the Academy’s network of Excellence Centres are revolutionising the way in which local employers can access training and skills support. Each Excellence Centre:
- Provides a local hub for employers and learners to access high quality relevant training
- Plans and runs training events for support workers in all organisations within the region
- Manages new e-learning development and facilitate e-learning for local support workers
- Helps training providers ensure their development programmes are viable
- Recognises and promotes high quality training provision through the Skills for Health Quality Mark scheme
- Provides an accessible and relevant on-line resource through which employers, managers and individuals can stay up-to-date with matters affecting education and skills
Excellence Centre locations and contacts
The locations of the first nine National Skills Academy for Health Excellence Centres are listed below, along with each centre's lead employer. If you are a healthcare employer or training provider and would like further information about joining an Excellence Centre network, please visit the relevant Excellence Centre homepage or contact the Network Services Management team on [email protected]
- City and East London Excellence Centre
Lead employer: Barts
- Devon Excellence Centre
Lead employer: Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust
- Essex Excellence Centre
Lead employer: The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust
- Kent Surrey and Sussex Excellence Centre
Lead employer: Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
- North Bristol Excellence Centre
Lead employer: North Bristol NHS Trust
- Nottingham Excellence Centre
Lead employer: Nottingham CityCare Partnership
- Sandwell and West Birmingham Excellence Centre
Lead employer: NHS Sandwell and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group
- South Yorkshire Region Excellence Centre
Lead employer: Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
- Southampton and Solent Southampton Excellence Centre
Lead employer: University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust
- West Yorkshire Excellence Centre
Lead employers: Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust
How the Excellence Centre model works
Each Excellence Centre acts as a regional hub to develop strong collaborations between training providers and healthcare employers from the public, independent and voluntary sectors.
Together, the organisations in each Excellence Centre network design and deliver new learning resources for healthcare support staff, share training expertise and make best use of skills development facilities.
Each Excellence Centre has a Regional Advisory Group, made up of employers and other stakeholders, which, in turn, work with the National Advisory Group. The Groups collaborate to identify local and national training needs and design development solutions to improve the competencies of healthcare support workers.
Smaller healthcare organisations are a particular focus of engagement, with the development process aiming to reach out to a broad range of employers including hospices, care homes, dentists, GP surgeries and pharmacies.
New e-learning development
In addition to the design and implementation of face-to-face and blended learning programmes, the Excellence Centre network are coordinating the development of 20 new national e-learning resources, including six new learning programmes centred on patient care. These will cover such areas as:
- Skills for providing community care, for example dementia support, medicine management and recognising signs of abuse
- Support for developing key behaviours and values critical to new entrants
- Support for the development of study skills to facilitate the advancement of workers’ skills to level 3, 4 and 5
- Further development of foundation skills, such as English, maths and IT, tailored to the needs of the sector
- Support for the development of clinical skills which may lead on to other advanced training and qualifications