Nursing Associate

Nursing Associate is a new role within the primary care nursing team. Nursing Associates work with healthcare support workers and registered nurses to deliver care for patients and the public. Nursing Associates work across all four fields of nursing: adult, children’s, mental health, and learning disability.

Your skills and responsibilities will vary, depending on the care setting you work in. You’ll need to demonstrate the values and behaviours of the NHS constitution and a knowledge of physical health, mental health and illness prevention.

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Download Nursing Associate job role, job descriptions and case studies


GP consultation

You will undertake academic learning on day a week and work based learning the rest of the week. You’ll be employed in a specific healthcare setting such as an acute, community or mental health hospital or a GP practice but also gain experience of other healthcare settings.

You will develop an understanding of all elements of the nursing process and of caring for individuals with particular conditions such as dementia, mental ill health and learning disabilities/difficulties.


GP consultation

The Nursing Associate role is employed across health and care services. Qualified Nursing Associates can also go on to train as a registered nurse by putting their training towards a shortened nursing degree or completing a degree-level nurse apprenticeship

The regulation of Nursing Associates

The part of the nursing register for nursing associates opened in January 2019, this has allowed the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) to being accepting people to begin accepting people onto the register to enable them to practice as a nursing associate in England. It also allows the NMC to investigate concerns about a registered nursing associate’s conduct or practice, where this is considered impaired and take action to improve care and keep the public safe if needed.

To do this, the NMC sets the following standards:

Nurse associates are broadly regulated in the same way that nurses are, which includes registration, revalidation and fitness to practice.

Additional information regarding the nurse associate framework can be found here:

The nursing associate apprenticeship standard is available to employers and the apprenticeship levy can be used for training fees.

Routes to becoming a Nursing Associate

The infographic below produced by NHS Employers highlights the different routes to becoming a Nursing Associate. Download the Routes to becoming a Nursing infographic.Routes to becoming a Nursing Associate

Standards for pre-registration Nursing Associate programmes

The Standards for pre-registration nursing associate programmes set out the specific requirements that apply to all pre-registration nursing associate education programmes approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

Download Standards for pre-registration nursing associate programmes.

Standards of proficiency for registered Nursing Associates

The Standards of proficiency for registered nursing associates set out the knowledge and skills that a nursing associate needs to meet according to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

Download Standards of proficiency for registered nursing associates