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Subsidised training and new qualifications underpin new care career structure

The Department of Health and Social Care has introduced the first ever national care career structure, with defined roles and professional development.

The plans being rolled out include:

  • Over £50 million of funding for a new qualification: This will support up to 37,000 individuals in direct adult social care roles to enrol on the new Level 2 Adult Social Care Certificate qualification between June 2024 and March 2025.
  • An investment of over £20 million for apprenticeships: Local authorities and adult social care providers will be able to use the money towards training and supervising hundreds of new social work and nurse apprentices. 
  • Subsidised training places: An uplift to the Workforce Development Fund will expand access to learning and development, creating opportunities for the workforce to become experts in their field or progress into new roles.
  • A new digital leadership qualification: This will help equip social care leaders and managers with the confidence and capability to lead the implementation and use of technology in the delivery of care.

Care leaders have broadly welcomed the measures, particularly following changes to the international recruitment route – but they do not consider this a “fix” for social care.

Care England CEO Professor Martin Green said: “Career structures and pathways play a key role in attracting and keeping people in adult social care roles. But these are not the only factors.”

Professor Vic Rayner, CEO of National Care Forum added: “Without an accompanying properly funded pay structure [it] will do little to attract and retain people to progress through the career structure.”

Sam Monaghan, CEO of care group MHA, said: “We’re encouraging the Government to go even further, by creating a Social Care Council that will professionalise the sector and act as an independent body examining issues such as pay scales, working hours, recruitment and training.”

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