New West Sussex nursing school to 'develop hundreds of new healthcare professionals'

Plans for a new nursing school in West Sussex have been revealed.

Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 11:25 am
Updated Wednesday, 12th May 2021, 11:26 am

Work has begun on the state-of-the-art facility at the University of Chichester, which will open to students in September.

It was developed in collaboration with University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust and other health and social care providers in the region.

The university said the School of Nursing and Allied Heath is 'aiming to develop hundreds of new healthcare professionals' by 2025, in the post-Covid era.

It will initially launch with a three-year BSc (Hons) in Adult Nursing, and will run alongside physiotherapy and alternative routes including health-related degree apprenticeships.

The facility has received £1.2million of funding from the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership, as part of its 'plans to strengthen the region’s health and social care workforce'.

Head of school, Dr Nita Muir, who has been a registered nurse for 30 years, will oversee the new degree programmes.

She said: “We will be developing nurses of the future – who not only demonstrate compassion and care, but courage in the face of extreme challenges, as we’ve seen across the Covid pandemic, and who possess superior digital skills for a new-era of British healthcare.

The university will educate hundreds of new healthcare workers at new School of Nursing and Allied Health

“Nursing today is a more complex environment than ever before and nurses take a much more holistic view of healthcare – from A&E through to end-of-life.

"We have specifically partnered with major healthcare providers across Sussex to person-centred real-life experiences of contemporary nursing into the curriculum to create a degree unlike any other in the UK.”

The centre will be located at the University’s Chichester campus in a large training centre – directly adjacent to St Richard’s Hospital.

It is more than 30 years since the institution last offered healthcare degrees.

An artist's impression of the mock wards located at the university's new nursing school

The 1,600-square-foot teaching headquarters is currently undergoing a multi-million pound development.

The university said that, once opened, the facility will be fitted with state-of-the-art clinical equipment in a number of mock wards to provide 'real-life simulation' training for students and support clinical learning in 'various practice environments'.

University Vice-Chancellor Professor Jane Longmore said it is an 'extremely positive development for Chichester and its region'.

She added: "The University has a proud heritage of training students for the professions and we look forward to the development of a new School of Nursing and Allied Health working with University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust and others Trusts across the region.”

The person-centred curriculum for the new Adult Nursing degree, which is supported by Health Education England, has been 'partly created' by practitioners together with carers and service users from across Sussex.

The University has also partnered with a number of regional NHS, private, and voluntary health and care providers to support the 'significant amount of placement' required for each student.

Among those is the Sussex-based Valerie Manor nursing and residential care home which is owned by Zoe Fry, who is also the director of West Sussex Partners in Care.

She said: “I am incredibly excited for nursing homes in this locality to be involved in supporting student nurses to develop.

"The role of the nurse working across health and social care is vital so to be part of their development in this course is a welcome opportunity for us.”

Applications for students applying for September 2021 are now open. The school is 'currently waiting for final approval' with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

For more information on new BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing degree at the University of Chichester, visit www.chi.ac.uk/nursing.