Health and social care students, Nicole Warnock and Leah Lynn, (behind), CEO of Education Partnership North East, Ellen Thinnesen, Curriculum Manager, Colleen Sawicki, Student President for Hartlepool Sixth Form and Sunderland College, Zainab Nadeem, student Hattie O’beirne, MP Mike Hil, Head of Hartlepool Sixth Form, Mark Edwards, students Elisha Constantine, Danny Nicholson and Olivia Kell.
Tegan Chapman

North East sixth form invests in future healthcare professionals

A North East sixth form has launched a state-of-the-art Health Hub to provide future healthcare professionals with skills to meet the sector’s increasing needs.   Healthcare jobs are in high demand across the health and care sector and the predicted shortfall in roles across the Tees Valley is expected to stretch beyond 4,000 by 2022.   The Health Hub at Hartlepool Sixth Form will deliver industry-standard training in a realistic setting, including a new health and social care simulated ward and community care facility.

This has led to exciting new partnerships with Person Centred Software and ASCOM, who will support students to develop their digital skills, embedding digital technology in care, to reach their full potential.   Mark Hughes, Head of Hartlepool Sixth Form, said: “The Health Hub provides our students with a specialist learning environment that replicates real-world care settings.

“Working alongside Person Centred Software and ASCOM will give our students an advantage of working with industry-standard technology, used in real-life care settings and will prepare them for progression to careers in the health and social care sectors, shaping our curriculum and transforming our health and social care provision for the benefit of Hartlepool and the Tees Valley.”   The Health Hub consists of a three-bed hospital ward, sluice area and treatment room and is also home to an assisted living area which mirrors the home care environment.

This latest development will allow Hartlepool Sixth Form to support a greater range of learners to enter into health professions, including the launch in January of a new suite of health and wellbeing provisions for adult learners.    Andrew Coles, Head of Product Management, for Person Centred Software, added: “We are proud to work closely with Hartlepool Sixth Form to help support its students to use electronic care planning systems so that when they enter the workplace in care homes they will already understand the value of using electronic systems.   “The rise of digital systems in health and social care is leading providers to ask candidates about their experiences using electronic systems. Students will be a better fit for the criteria care providers are looking for and better prepared for the workplace.

“This will help reduce staff turnover in care homes, which tends to be very high, and save time and money on recruitment and training.”   Hartlepool Sixth Form currently works alongside 22 employers within the health and social care sector. In addition, 88 students are completing 415 placement hours over a two-year study programme and 100% of its level 3 health and social care students’ progress to employment or Higher Education.

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