Exploring assistant practitioners’ views of their role and training
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Exploring assistant practitioners’ views of their role and training

Hilary Bungay Course leader, MSc advanced practice, Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge, England
Jo Jackson Dean of health, School of Health and Human Sciences, University of Essex, Colchester, England
Sue Lord Team leader, General, vascular and laparoscopic surgery, Main theatres, Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust, Harlow, England

Aim: To examine the views of assistant practitioners and trainee assistant practitioners regarding experiences of practice in relation to the autonomy of the role and level of supervision, the training involved and support experienced in undertaking the foundation degree, and the effects of the assistant practitioner role in the workplace.

Method: A service evaluation was undertaken in which a small cross-sectional quantitative survey was distributed to trainee assistant practitioners undertaking the foundation degree, and assistant practitioners who had previously completed the foundation degree or who had qualified via another route.

Results: A total of 93 questionnaires were returned. The data indicate that there is some uncertainty surrounding the skills and competence of those undertaking the foundation degree, and a lack of opportunity for career progression for unregistered staff.

Conclusion: Increased understanding of the scope and role of assistant practitioners and the academic requirements of the foundation degree is required to increase assistant practitioner numbers.

Nursing Standard. 30, 30,46-52. doi: 10.7748/ns.30.30.46.s46

Correspondence

hilary.bungay@anglia.ac.uk

Peer review

All articles are subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software.

Received: 04 December 2014

Accepted: 13 March 2015