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Nursing associate

Alternative titles for this job include Nurse associate

Nursing associates care for sick people of all ages in hospital and in the community, working closely with registered nurses.

Average salary (a year)

£20,329 Starter


£24,881 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

37.5 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings / weekends on shifts

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a nursing associate

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role


You could do a Nursing Associate Foundation degree at university. This typically takes 2 years to complete when studied full-time.

You will need to check course fees and funding information for this route with individual universities.

You can also check that the course is approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • at least 1 A level, or equivalent, for a foundation degree

More Information


You can do a nursing associate higher apprenticeship. This takes 2 years to complete and combines study with training on the job.

Entry requirements

To do this apprenticeship, you'll need:

  • 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths

More Information


You could start as a healthcare assistant or care worker in a hospital or community care setting. Once you have some experience, you could apply for a place on the nursing associate higher apprenticeship and train on the job.


You'll find it useful to get some paid or voluntary experience in a healthcare setting or personal care role. This will help when you apply for jobs.

You could contact the voluntary services co-ordinator at your local NHS trust for advice about opportunities.

More Information


Further information

You can find out more about how to become a nursing associate from Health Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • a desire to help people
  • knowledge of psychology
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with others
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

Restrictions and Requirements

You'll need to:

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

In this role you could:

  • set up drips and take blood samples
  • monitor equipment like electrocardiograms (ECGs)
  • record data, for instance temperature and blood pressure
  • clean and dress wounds
  • give injections and some medications
  • share information about patients' progress with registered nurses
  • support patients and their families
  • care for patients with mental health or learning disabilities
  • maintain hygiene standards and manage infection risks
  • update patient and work records

Working environment

You could work in an NHS or private hospital, at a hospice or in the community.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding.

You may need to wear a uniform.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

You can train to become a registered nurse by completing a shortened nursing degree or a nursing degree apprenticeship.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

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Courses In England

Access to HE - Nursing

  • Provider: HCUC (Harrow College & Uxbridge College)
  • Start date: 13 September 2022
  • Location: Harrow

Access to HE - Nursing

  • Start date: 05 September 2022
  • Location: Rugby

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