• To familiarise yourself with what nursing associate apprenticeships involve
• To read about apprentice nursing associates’ experiences of home placements in primary or social care
• To explore factors that may support or hinder apprentice nursing associates’ professional development
Background An increasing number of apprentice nursing associates undertake their home placement in primary care or social care, but there is limited understanding of apprentice nursing associates’ experiences in these settings.
Aim To explore apprentice nursing associates’ experiences of a home placement in primary care or social care and provide initial insight into what may support or hinder their professional development in these settings.
Method A mixed-methods study design was used with qualitative interviews complemented by a quantitative survey. Participants were recruited among 27 current or former apprentice nursing associates studying at one London university. Eleven current or former apprentices were interviewed and 15 completed the survey.
Findings Participants’ motivations for applying to become nursing associates were to develop professionally and advance their careers. They experienced supportive learning environments where they felt part of the team, but also unsupportive learning environments where they were denied protected learning time and supervised practice. Several participants experienced unfair treatment and abuses of power, including non-payment for university days and external placements, sexual harassment and marginalisation.
Conclusion Apprentice nursing associates can have suboptimal experiences of home placements in primary care or social care and be subjected to unfair treatment and abuse. Urgent action is required from higher education institutions and employers to ensure apprentice nursing associates are adequately supported.
Nursing Management. doi: 10.7748/nm.2023.e2098Peer review
This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated softwareCorrespondence
Leah V, Watts P, Caffrey A (2023) Exploring apprentice nursing associates’ experiences of their home placements in primary care or social care. Nursing Management. doi: 10.7748/nm.2023.e2098
Published online: 31 October 2023
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