Atlantis Medical News

UCAS figures raise more concerns for Nursing


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UPDATED

09 JAN 2018


Recent figures provided by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) indicates that there is more to be concerned about with regards to the number of people looking to take nursing courses. This can be seen in the fall of people from England starting an undergraduate nursing course. The figure has fallen by 2.6% in 2017 and once again this has led to concerns and issues that the supply of nurses in the future is now in peril.


The official figures show that there was a fall of 585 people taking University nursing course places this year when compared with the 2016 figures. This follows on from the fact that there has been a 23% fall in the number of people based in England looking to study nursing at a University in the country. This comes on the back of bursaries being removed in the country.


2016 was a record year
In 2016, there was a total of 22,630 applicants and in 2017, the figure for nursing applicants who accepted a place in England, for the September intake, was 22,045. While this is a fall, it should perhaps be remembered that the 2016 figure was a record breaking year, and perhaps the 2017 figure is a readjustment on the back of that. It is always disappointing when you see figures falling but when you follow on from a record breaking year, it can often be difficult to achieve what you are looking for.


It is natural to look at the situation in Scotland and in Wales, because there has been no removal of bursaries in these locations. As you’d possibly expect, there has been an increase in the volume of people accepting places on a pre-registration nursing which is good news for these regions, and perhaps the NHS in general. If you have flexibility to move around when you study, it makes sense to head to the destination where you are going to receive the best standard of financial support. Depending on your initial location, it may be that Scotland or Wales isn’t too far away from your home, and there are many fantastic cities in both of these countries where people can enjoy a good standard of training.


It may be that these people decide to stay on in the area, which means that NHS England will lose out on these professionals but you will find that some will decide to complete their training in Scotland or Wales and then head back to England.


At Atlantis Medical, we appreciate that there will be concern over these figures, even if there is a need to look at the bigger picture. If there is indication that people don’t want to be nurses or are not signing up for the courses, then yes, there will be longer term issues for the NHS to deal with. When you think that many people already have concerns over the long term future of the NHS, this isn’t the sort of news that you want to see or have to deal with. However, it can only be hoped that there is still a demand for these courses, and that there is a strong future for the NHS.

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