Advanced search

Do you have any questions about returning to nursing? NHS experts have answered questions

(160 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

EllieMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 02-May-19 11:28:23

Answers are now back - you can find them on this page.

Becoming a parent is one of the most fulfilling jobs that most will ever encounter; it is an amazing time for all. It can also mean that parents may seek a new career path after their parental leave or decide they'd prefer to go back to what they were doing before. If you've been a nurse in the past and would like to get back into it, the NHS would love to answer any questions you may have. Raych is a returnee nurse and Joy is from Health Education England. They can answer your questions about training and support.

Here is what the NHS has to say: “Your nursing skills and experience are needed more than ever before. There has never been a better time to return to nursing and it is easier than you might think. We have fully funded return to practice courses across England; your course will be paid for, and you'll receive at least £500 to help with travel, childcare and book costs. Mentors and tutors will be available throughout your course to build your confidence and get you ready to come back. The length of your course will depend on how long you've been out of practice but wont take longer than 12 months.”

Here is some more information on Raych: Raych qualified as a nurse in 1996 and worked at the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford, then moved overseas and began a family. She left the profession in 2010 to focus on juggling her family's busy commitments. As her circumstances gradually changed she investigated a return to nursing, then last July, everything came together and she was able to do the Return to Practice course whilst working at the Royal Papworth Hospital. Following this her PIN was reactivated in March 2019 and she is now back in the career she loves.

Here is some information on Joy: Joy has been in the NHS for more than 30 years and is a nurse by background. She is passionate about encouraging nurses to return to practice and has extensive experience of supporting them to successfully return to the nursing workforce. Ask her your questions!

Maybe you’d like to know some more information on how to get into nursing? Would you like to know exactly what the job entails and if any flexible working is available? Are you an ex-nurse wanting to return and have a few questions on exactly how to go about doing this? Or maybe you have questions about the application and training process?

Whatever questions you have about nursing (whether it’s returning to or wanting to start), ask them on the thread below and we will choose approximately 10 for Raych and Joy to answer. Everyone who posts their questions will be entered into a prize draw where 3 MNers will win a £100 voucher of their choice (from a list).

Thanks and good luck with the prize draw!

Standard Insight T&Cs Apply

Are you considering returning to nursing? It's easier than you think. Sign up now to get your step-by-step email guide that includes a course finder, financial support and work placement information.

StreetDreams Wed 08-May-19 01:22:48

I did an access course to study medicine a couple of years ago because I didn't have any science A levels, which I passed with distinction. I got into medical school but then found I was pregnant and never took my place up. Fast forward a couple of years and I would like to get back on track except that now I think I would like to look at nursing or midwifery rather than medical school. Do you think my access course would be accepted by nursing courses or would I need to start again from scratch? Are there any opportunities for accelerated training? I also have a degree in a non science subject, if that's relevant. Thanks.

BristolMum96 Wed 08-May-19 18:10:06

How will I be supported back into my job role? Would there be any training provision?

JenMumma Thu 09-May-19 12:54:44

The treatment and pay of nurses is constantly in the news, have things changed for nurses ?
Would there be any out of pocket expenses at all in this day in age where every penny / hour of childcare needs to be accounted for because a £500 bursary doesn't seem like a lot for full time education.

TwinsTrollsandHunz Thu 09-May-19 14:22:54

Interesting to see this recruitment drive on MN. Nurses are leaving in droves with many older nurses approaching retirement choosing not to revalidate and those struggling with extreme stress and poor health as a result of increased pressure, increased expectation and inadequate resources. Nurse burn out is at an all time high. Student nurses are now having to fund their degrees alongside fitting in 2300 practice hours, assignments and lectures, given that many student nurses are mature students with families it is not an easy route. Then they qualify and its like being dropped into a war zone.

Things need to change in nursing and fast, I don’t mean just begging more ‘ones that got away’ to come back to prop up numbers. We need a political system and a union who care about and respect nursing and nurses.

TooStressyTooMessy Thu 09-May-19 14:39:11

Totally agree Twins.

Jemima232 Thu 09-May-19 14:44:25

I wanted to return to nursing. I had been a G-grade nurse for many years.

I went to a half-day returners access course. Thirty ex-nurses attended and were being assessed and interviewed.

None of us were selected, which begs the question - how do you select returners?

fishnships Thu 09-May-19 18:11:27

DD is considering nursing as a career. She is aware that hours may be unsocial, but how easy is it likely to be to return after a career break?

Livedandlearned Thu 09-May-19 18:16:12

The recruitment drives and incentive to train for nurses is similar to teaching. If the teachers already teaching and nurses already nursing had better conditions and pay then things would be better all round surely.

Enigma222 Thu 09-May-19 18:26:57

I am considering a career change and going into nursing. Every job has its pros and cons but would you say the NHS has better benefits than joining a private nursing company?

sharond101 Thu 09-May-19 19:06:19

Where can I find up to date resources on what has changed recently.

Prequelle Thu 09-May-19 19:42:20

Don't bloody do it. It's not worth it.

Easylikeasonntagmorgan Thu 09-May-19 20:25:04

I worked as an Adult nurse for 5 years, and am now taking a career break to raise my daughter with SEN. I might be interested in returning to practice in a few years. How easy would it be to switch to LD or children's nursing? Would I have to do a whole uni course again?

WarIsPeace Thu 09-May-19 20:51:41

I was G grade /top of band 6 for years then worked outside the NHS for a while . If I returned would I be expected to be paid the bottom of band 5?

elfycat Thu 09-May-19 21:05:07

I'm a lapsed nurse and have considered returning. My current thoughts are that I would like to train as a HV but need to return to nursing first. Would it be likely (area dependant) that I could go straight from one course to the next?

DuckWillow Thu 09-May-19 21:41:33

I was working as a HV prior to taking a break five years ago to support my son who is, autistic.
I desperately want to return but the course coincides with my son starting college.
Id like to know if the clinical hours I need to do can be done over 24 weeks, rather than 12 weeks (length of most return to practice course it seems). This would mean the 300 clinical hours I need to do could be done at 15 hrs a week plus the study day for the first 12 weeks.

Or are all the courses done with an expectation that the returnee will fulfill them over the length of the course.

Orangesox Thu 09-May-19 22:39:54

What plans do you have to support returning nurses who might have physical impairments that would mean they might find a placement on a clinic Ward difficult?

It’s a real and very worrying concern of many nurses I know who would be considering a break from nursing for a variety of reasons, but are scared to give up their registration. There are many nurses out their who don’t practise bedside nursing for just that reason, yet we seem to be expected to only return via the traditional routes. It’s a little concerning that you could be discriminating against otherwise very capable nurses...

SeaWitchly Thu 09-May-19 23:54:41

I agree with everything Twins said.
I have just let my registration lapse as I am moving into a diffferent career, one with better hours and salary, also more status and respect tbh.
I have been a registered nurse for 25 years and have finally had enough.
I am sorry to say I really couldn’t recommend nursing as a career to anyone particularly in the UK with a Tory government 😞

JulesJules Fri 10-May-19 03:34:47

Last time I enquired about returning to nursing, I was told that being away for 10 years was the cut off - and I have been out for longer than that - is this still the case? Also it seemed that the return to practice course was a series of lectures on for e.g. the ethos of the NHS, but you had to sort out the clinical side yourself? It all seemed a bit vague

BryanAdamsLeftAnkle Fri 10-May-19 07:18:03

I'm a 3rd year Student Nurse due to qualify. If you think £500 towards childcare is enough you are out of touch. I get £200 a month. On placement my son can use that in a week...

His care is £45 per day 830-5pm.ward hours are 7-8pm ... And students have very little autonomy so asking to fit in childcare is not an acceptable option.

I'm currently in community working 5 days. My husband also works for NHS. 5x £45 plus additional hours....

If you want to appeal to returners, you need to be realistic

blackleggingsandatshirt Fri 10-May-19 08:21:54

Hello, I was registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council, and have a degree in nursing, my registration has lapsed, as I have been a SAHM for 7 years, I don't want to go back to midwifery, but am very interested in returning to nursing on a children's ward, what would the process/training/additional qualifications needed to return.

Montydoo Fri 10-May-19 08:28:15

I am currently a HCA, and have been in this post on wards for 7 years, I would like to transfer my skills and experience to nursing, I am committed to obtaining the qualifications, (I have NVQ's 5 GCSE's) do you think I would be considered for progression to nursing ?

crosser62 Fri 10-May-19 08:55:07

Why are you not answering any of the questions?

Do you think that this is a good idea as it inevitably will attract very negative responses because there are very little positives to be shared from within the nursing community at present, indeed for a long time.

I share the opinion that I would actively discourage any one to return or begin nurse training as conditions are extremely dire.
It would be a mistake to go into nursing nowadays.

From first hand, current and bitter experience.

TwinsTrollsandHunz Fri 10-May-19 14:18:12

There are a lot of disillusioned nurses and ex nurses on MN, crosser. It’s so sad what’s happened and happening to patient care and nursing as a profession. I’m torn as to whether to stay and try to fight it from the inside but I honestly don’t think there’s any value in it anymore. I don’t think I’ll be revalidating either. I love my job, I love my patient group, I love that I have so many skills and so much experience but I hate, hate the political gaslighting, the fact that my service is constantly being cut year on year, that my skills and experience aren’t respected by senior management, that my colleagues both in my service and friends in other roles are feeling demoralised and some are downright terrified of losing their PINs every shift thanks to precarious or inappropriate staffing.

Sorry MN, I know this is not what you had in mind for this thread but active nurses needs are ignored, it seems crazy to invite more victims to the party.

crosser62 Fri 10-May-19 15:06:09

100% agree.

30 years I have been nursing, 30 years I have dedicated to my beloved NHS.
My beloved NHS would throw me under the bus at the 1st opportunity and puts me in a position of such precariousness that my patients, colleagues and myself are at serious risk for the majority of the working day and night.

We walk upon a precipice of safe working practice moment to moment.
There is a desperation to do the right thing, make those hours matter to those vulnerable patients while I’m there but knowing that I can’t.

Twice in the last 2 weeks I have been forced into such unsafe working practices that I have gone home and sobbed and then had sleepless days worrying that I have done something wrong, missed something and not given my best.
That is the state of my beloved NHS.
There is no saving it. It is not at breaking point, it is broken.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Get started »