The Open University plans to offer the pre-registration learning disabilities nursing programme

At the Open University, we are delighted to announce that, subject to NMC approval, our new pre-registration nursing programme, based on the NMC’s 2018 Future Nurse Standards, will include the learning disabilities field of practice. We have offered adult nursing and mental health nursing since 2002 and have students studying in all four nations of the UK. Our students are healthcare support workers who are supported by their employers and the student retention rate on our programme is consistently over 93%. 

During preparation of our new programme we are working collaboratively with service users, families, practitioners and students/alumni.  We are really pleased to be working with and for people who have learning disabilities, their families and many of the health and social care professionals who work to support them.  We look forward to developing and delivering an innovative distance education pre-registration learning disabilities nursing programme that we hope will go some way to address the current crisis in learning disability nurse training and education.

Please share this information widely. For further information, feel free to email Sheila Counihan, sheila.counihan@open.ac.uk, who is leading on the development of the programme. 

Open University Nursing Curriculum Partnership Events

Our current nursing degrees meet the Nursing and Midwifery Council’s (NMC) 2010 Standards for Pre-registration Nursing Education. In 2016 the NMC started the process of developing new standards, which will be published in April/May 2018. We will deliver new degrees based on these standards from September 2019. For the first time we will offer learning disability nursing, as well as adult nursing and mental health.

From September 2017-January 2018, we ran seven curriculum partnership events and we were delighted that 195 people took part.  We held these events in Nottingham, Belfast, Leeds, Newcastle, Exeter, Tunbridge Wells and Winchester. We also held an afternoon session at the Annual Nursing Partnership Meeting in Scotland, conducted skype meetings with practice tutors and module tutors from across the UK, and held individual phone calls with service users/carers and alumni in Scotland.  A good mix of stakeholders attended our events, including employer representatives, mentors, OU practice tutors and module tutors, service users/carers, students and alumni.  Nation/locality and central academics attended each event.

Altogether, we have captured rich information that we are now using as we start planning the new programme. This report Stakeholder consultation report_final March 2018 provides a summary of all the discussions at our events, combined with information from the additional consultation activities.

Don’t forget it is National Apprenticeships week.  If you would like any further details regarding what apprenticeships we offer please go to the following links:

http://www.open.ac.uk/business/apprenticeships/degree-and-higher/health-apprenticeship

http://www.open.ac.uk/business/apprenticeships/degree-and-higher/registered-nurse-degree-apprenticeship

We also offer the Higher Apprentice Nursing Associate.

Thank you for your continued support Dr Lesley Baillie.  Senior Lecturer and Qualifications lead, Nursing

Follow us on twitter @ou_hwsc, @lesleyJBaillie.  Use the hashtag #OpenUniNursing

If you would like to contact us then please use WELS-Nursing-QA@open.ac.uk