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HEE welcomes rise in applications for nursing degrees

6 February 2020

The chief nurse of Health Education England has welcomed new figures showing that applications to start nursing degrees in 2020 have risen for the second year running after a five-year decline. 

Statistics released today (February 6) by UCAS show that applications to study nursing from English residents have risen by six per cent from 30,650 in 2019 to 32,490 this year, based on a January 15 deadline to apply.

A total of 9,700 applications came from 18-year-olds - the largest group - but applications from those aged 35 and over have risen by 23 per cent, and by 13 per cent for those aged  30-34.

Mark Radford, chief nurse, Health Education England, said: “It’s extremely encouraging to see this significant increase for the second year running.

“We welcome the new undergraduate financial support package and the impact that will have on those considering a career in nursing. The increase in applications among those over 35 is also particularly welcome as we’ve done a lot of very specific work to attract interest from this group.

“We, through our Health Careers team, are pleased to have been able to work with NHS England and Improvement on the ‘We Are The NHS’ campaign towards the aims of the NHS People Plan.  Campaign data shows that more than 33,000 career-switchers have signed up to receive information, and over 11,000 told us they had applied.”