Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in /home/nclexion/public_html/wp-content/themes/jnews/class/ContentTag.php on line 47
Applications to study nursing in England have increased by more than 1,300 since last year, however numbers are still down since the bursary was scrapped in 2016, according to figures published today.
Latest data from the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) show the number of people who applied for an undergraduate nursing course in England are up by almost 6% since 2018, but down by almost 25% since 2016.
“Nurse training levels are nowhere near reaching the scale required to end the staffing crisis”
Nurse leaders have said the numbers are “nowhere near” what is required to end nurse staffing shortages, which now stand at 43,593, according to the latest data, also released today, from NHS Digital.
UCAS figures for the number of undergraduate student nurses accepted onto a course in England in 2019 show an increase of 6.4% since 2018, and 4.6% since the removal of the bursary, which covered both tuition fees and the cost of living.
This year, there were 23,630 students accepted to study nursing in England – 23,060 of whom were already living in the country.
Royal College of Nursing director for England, Patricia Marquis, said: “This modest good news still shows England’s nurse training levels are nowhere near reaching the scale and pace required to end the nurse staffing crisis.”
She reiterated the RCN’s call for the next government to “put at least an extra £1bn each year in England on tuition fees and living costs for nursing students”.
Across the UK overall, there were 30,390 people accepted onto nursing courses in 2019 and the total number of applicants was 54,225.
For mature students aged 21 and above, there were 22,815 applicants in the UK, down from 34,145 when the bursary was last in place.
The bursary, which has become a part of the current general election battle in England, is still in place for student nurses in Wales and Scotland.
In Wales, 1,815 students have been accepted to study in the country during 2019, up from 1,760 in 2018. Meanwhile, in Scotland, there have been 4,040 students accepted onto courses there in 2019, up from 3,725 in 2018.
Northern Ireland has also seen a small increase in the number of students accepted, up from 855 in 2018 to 910 in 2019.