In January 2017 HEE commissioned an independent evaluation of the Advanced Practices Scheme (ATPS) by the Centre for Health and Social Care Research (CHSCR) at Sheffield Hallam University (SHU). The ground breaking scheme which commenced in 2009, is funded by Health Education England (HEE) and now forms part of the wider National Training Hubs Initiative (NTHI). The NTHI was devised as an innovative way to consolidate the success of the ATPS (and other similar schemes) and increase the number of primary care training placements and helping to create a new model of training for general practice nursing.
The evaluation provided HEE with further evidence on which to make informed decisions as to what a training hub should 'look like'. It will also help to inform the 'direction of travel' for the future of General Practice Nurse (GPN) education and training.
Training hubs were developed as an effective and sustainable way of meeting the educational needs of the primary care team. The NTHI is a key part of the response to the key government documents the '10 point plan' (2015) and the 'Five Year Forward View' (2014). It brings together primary care and higher education establishments, and provides networks to support workforce planning, provide additional learner placements and aims to improve quality and governance in primary care.
The scheme supports the development of the community-based workforce, which in turn will help to meet the future health needs of the local population(s). The aim is to empower community teams to work with higher educational institutions (HEIs) such as SHU, to assess their workforce training needs, expand training capacity, and deliver innovative multi-professional training 'in situ'.
As part of the NTHI, the Advanced Training Practices (ATPs) within Yorkshire and the Humber are accredited by HEE as General Practice (GP) training hubs to provide undergraduate placements for student nurses. The ATPS remit is to provide placements that offer students a more in-depth and sustained exposure to general practice. This high quality exposure will enable the students to develop the key skills required to work effectively in a general practice setting.