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Flexi-job apprenticeship opens up new opportunities

New flexible apprenticeships will soon be available to create opportunities for more people to earn while they learn across health and care in the North East and North Cumbria.

The North East and North Cumbria (NENC) Integrated Care System has been awarded Flexible Apprenticeship Status by the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA), one of only 15 organisations to be selected and the only health and care system in the country to receive this approval.

The new flexi-job apprenticeship scheme will allow people to be employed by the NENC ICS during their apprenticeship, therefore opening up a new paid training route to a career within health and care services within the region, boosting both recruitment opportunities and the local economy.

Apprentices will be able to earn and learn, rotating in different health and care organisations during their apprenticeship, whilst also helping smaller organisations such as GP practices where there may not be the infrastructure or capacity to employ an apprentice direct.

Samantha Allen, chief executive designate of the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care Board, said: “We are delighted the Education and Skills Funding Agency have approved the flexi-job apprenticeship scheme application submitted by the North East and North Cumbria.

“This will allow us to explore and implement innovative apprenticeship programmes to support the health and care system across the whole region. Developing our workforce of the future is a core priority and this will provide opportunities for local people to develop lifelong careers in health and care by gaining the skills, knowledge and experience to work across a number of settings. This scheme is testament to the strong partnerships that already exist in the North East and North Cumbria and we look forward to working with all stakeholder organisations as work gets underway to launch this exciting new apprenticeship programme.”

Now an apprentice employed by the NHS in the North East and North Cumbria will be able to work within several health organisations during their apprenticeship, giving them more opportunity to earn and learn the skills and competencies that they will require to progress into life long and fulfilling careers in health and care.

The flexi-job apprenticeship scheme for the NENC ICS will be co-ordinated by the Health Education England Widening Participation and Apprenticeships Team and NHS North of England Commissioning Support (NECS).

Stephen Childs, chief executive, NECS said: “We are delighted to be able to facilitate the flexi-job apprenticeship offer across the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System. We are hugely excited by this scheme which complements our very ambitious NECS 100 programme (giving graduates and 6th form leavers their chance to find a career in the NHS).

“We look forward to applying that learning and experience to the Flexi-Job Apprenticeship offer and provide even more job and development opportunities to the communities we serve.”

The first apprentices are expected to start their flexi-job apprenticeship placements in early summer.

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