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Technical Skills

For healthcare support workers (HCSWs), technical skills are likely to be clinical skills that enable you to undertake a broader range of activities linked to patient care, in your day-to-day role. Once you have completed the Care Certificate and your induction, you might want to continue developing your technical skills to gain knowledge, maintain your competency to the highest level possible and stay up to date with current clinical practice. 

A range of free elearning modules are available to support you and you can access these in addition to the face-to-face, simulated or work-based training that is often available through your employer. 

Resources for developing your technical skills

Care Certificate (HEE, Skills for Health and Skills for Care)

The Care Certificate is an identified set of standards that health and care professionals adhere to in their daily working life. Designed with the non-regulated workforce in mind, the Care Certificate gives everyone the confidence that health and care professionals have the same introductory skills, knowledge and behaviours to provide compassionate, safe and high-quality care and support in their own workplace setting.

The Care Certificate is based on 15 standards, which individuals need to complete in full before they can be awarded their certificate.

elearning for healthcare

Health Education England’s elearning for healthcare website provides over 400 elearning programmes for the health and care workforce in collaboration with organisations including Royal Colleges, the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England and NHS Improvement.

Visit the registration page.

HCSWs may find the following elearning for healthcare courses helpful.

Autism Awareness     

This course upskills health and care workers on what it’s like to experience autism, how to make services accessible for autistic people and how to adapt your behaviour to communicate effectively and respectfully to improve the experience of people who access your services. 

Communicating with Empathy

This course has been developed to promote sensitive and effective communication in end-of-life care.

Helping People Living in Cold Homes           

This elearning module is suitable for staff who visit patients, service users or customers in their homes.

Continence and Catheter Care         

The programme is aimed at nursing staff and healthcare assistants across all settings. It aims to improve knowledge and awareness of all aspects of continence and catheter care and describes the different types of incontinence and the therapies and treatments that can be offered to patients.     

COVID-19 Recovery and Rehabilitation       

This interactive elearning resource was created to support health and care staff, including allied health professionals, exercise professionals and carers working with people recovering from COVID-19.

Dementia       

This elearning programme in dementia care has been designed to enhance the training and education of the health and social care workforce. It focuses on the essential knowledge and skills needed to support and enable people living with dementia and their family carers to live as well as possible, wherever they live. This training follows the Dementia Training Standards Framework and sessions address tiers 1, 2 and 3 of the Framework.

The Lived Experience of Dementia   

This programme is aimed at all staff working in health and social care settings, providing a unique insight into the lived experience of dementia, increasing knowledge and understanding of the condition. It covers some of the learning outcomes from the Dementia Training Standards Framework and can support other learning materials covering tier 2 standards.

Dysphagia      

This elearning is relevant to health and social care staff, informal carers, and can be helpful to people with dysphagia themselves.   

End-of-Life Care for All          

This programme includes a specific learning path aimed at support workers to help them provide high-quality end-of-life care.

Essentials in Care      

This course consists of three short elearning sessions designed to give frontline staff in domiciliary, community, residential and nursing home settings essential knowledge in providing high-quality care.

Essentials in Wound Care for the Health and Care Workforce        

This elearning programme aims to support the health and care workforce in developing the knowledge and skills required to enable appropriate wound care to people in any setting.     

Hydration in Older People

This programme has been designed to increase your knowledge and confidence in assessing an older person’s hydration needs and minimising their risk of poor hydration in a person-centred way.

Aimed at any person working with older people in the community, including care home staff, home carers, family carers and volunteers, the elearning builds on the information and skills you may have already learnt and implemented from the Care Certificate.

The Hydration at Home programme from Wessex Academic Science Network provides additional learning resources to support you in developing your competencies around hydration at home for older people.

Mental Health Awareness Programme

This short programme aims to raise the awareness of mental health amongst healthcare staff.      

NHS at Home

This elearning provides an overview of pulse oximetry for carers, including how to take the measurements and how to tell colleagues if they are worried.

Personal Health Budgets       

The modules in this programme cover a variety of topics to support the delivery of personal health budgets at a local level.

Other elearning courses

Primary Care Courses (Primary Care Training Centre)        

These courses help HCSWs working in a primary care setting to develop the necessary skills to support patients and deliver high-quality care. Courses include asthma and COPD, chaperoning and a certificate for Higher Education in primary care.

Skills Platform

This platform draws together high-quality training and consultancy opportunities. People can search the platform to find the best training to meet their needs and make contact with their chosen provider to discuss their training options. Some providers also offer bespoke training packages. Some of these courses have a cost attached to them, so you might want to discuss how they would help you improve and develop in your role with your manager or employer. 

Undertaking these elearning modules might spark your interest in a particular area. If you are interested in developing in a specific area of practice, you can find more information on development roles (also known as ‘link’ roles) in the Personal skills section of this roadmap.