Qualification Code:



18-24 months

Delivery Method:

Classroom & Online


From £250

Course Overview

This occupation is found in the health and care sector. Senior healthcare support workers work in a range of settings for example in a hospital, as part of a community team, in a day-case unit, birthing centre, individual’s homes, operating theatres, nursing or care homes, hospices and in general practice.

The broad purpose of the occupation is support registered healthcare professionals in the delivery of high quality and compassionate health and care services. A senior healthcare support worker will provide clinical, therapeutic or diagnostic care under the direct or indirect supervision of a registered healthcare professional. For this standard, one of the following occupational options will be completed:

1. Adult nursing support:
Providing care and support for adults as part of the nursing team. Some of the individuals the adult nursing support worker cares for will have short-term needs for example, if they have a wound which requires dressing. Others may have long-term conditions which affect them every day, all their lives. Many individuals will have more than one condition, and some will need round the clock care for all their personal needs including feeding, washing, going to the toilet as well as for their clinical needs.

2. Maternity support:
Providing care and support for women, babies and their families as part of the maternity team. The maternity support worker will contribute to the care of women antenatally and during birth, and care for women and babies postnatally. They support new parents to care for their baby and to develop confidence and bonding.

3. Theatre support:
Providing care and support for individuals before, during and after operations as part of the multi-disciplinary theatre team. They will support individuals as they are preparing to go into theatre, reassuring them if they are anxious, and helping them move them back to recovery following their procedure. The theatre support worker will support the operating team by checking individuals into the theatre department, preparing equipment, counting swabs or other instruments and measuring fluids. They may be involved in routine, traumatic and emergency surgery.

4. Mental health support:
Providing care and support for individuals with mental ill health as part of the multi-disciplinary mental health team. They will support individuals, and their families, at different stages of their recovery by listening, providing emotional support, collaboratively developing care plans, implementing them creatively and reviewing them to meet the needs of the individual. The mental health support worker observes and reports changes in mental and physical well-being, encouraging independence and enabling individuals to live their life and achieve their goals. Usually, they will have to work closely with carers and with other organisations for example in housing and social care.

5. Children and young people support:
Providing care and support for babies, infants, children and young people as part of the children’s team. They work within guidelines and legislation designed to protect and support children and young people, recognising the different needs and rights they have at different ages and stages of their development. The children and young people support worker promotes person and family-centred care, including looked-after children, and working in partnership with parents, carers, families and other services and agencies.

6. Allied health profession therapy support:
Providing care and support for individuals through therapeutic activities as part of a multi-disciplinary team. Illness, disability or a change in life circumstances often means that individuals have to learn or be supported to do things in new and different ways. This can change the pattern of a life-course, but individuals can often expect to regain and enjoy a quality of life with support and rehabilitation. Some individuals may have short-term needs, others may have long-term physical and/or mental ill health or a learning disability that affects their independence, function or way of living. The therapy support worker will be required to work with the individual either on their own or within a group setting. They may also work with others to support the individual eg training carers or working with families.

7. Diagnostic imaging support:
Providing care and support for individuals through screening programmes, elective and emergency diagnostic imaging examinations including interventional procedures as part of a multi-disciplinary team within hospital and community sites. They will support individuals and help to manage the equipment used for imaging procedures. They support individuals and the team before and during the procedure, reassuring people if they are anxious and helping them with post-procedure care where necessary. Many individuals will have more than one condition, including serious traumatic injuries or life-changing diagnoses such as cancer. Diagnostic imaging support workers interact with patients, their carers and their families with various dependencies and ages. Diagnostic imaging support workers work within strict legislation and other guidelines designed to protect themselves and the individuals in their care.

In their daily work, an employee in this occupation interacts with:

  • patients, service users and carers
  • registered healthcare professionals, for example doctors, nurses, midwives and allied health professionals
  • social care staff including registered managers, care workers and social workers
  • administration, management and other non-clinical staff like porters, cleaners and receptionists

An employee in this occupation will be responsible for working within the limits of their competence, following standards, policies or protocols and agreed ways of working to provide a range of clinical, diagnostic or therapeutic interventions as part of the wider health and care team. Senior healthcare support workers report to a registered healthcare professional and undertake delegated activities in line with an individual’s care plan. Senior healthcare support workers use their knowledge, experience and understanding to take decisions within their area of responsibility. They are accountable for their own work and for reviewing the effectiveness of their actions. Senior healthcare support workers may supervise or guide other staff in their team. They must communicate effectively and be able to adhere to standards, including legislation, employer policies and procedures when handling sensitive information. They must maintain a safe and healthy working environment and keep their knowledge and skills up to date.

Non levy employer contribution (5%) – £250

Levy paying employer contribution – £5000

By the end of the programme and to become a Senior Healthcare Support Worker, Apprentices must have achieved the following:

  • Level 2 functional skills in English & Maths, if not already achieved
  • Level 3 Diploma in Healthcare Support

Those with an annual wage bill of less than £3m do not pay the Apprenticeship Levy. Instead, 95% of each apprenticeship is funded by the government whilst a 5% investment is required by the employer to enhance the skills of their employee.

  • Employers are also be eligible for a £1000 incentive payment if the apprentice is aged 16–18.
  • Employers with less than 50 employees and where the apprentice is aged 16–18, the government will fund 100% of the apprentice and are eligible for a £1000 incentive payment.
  • Employers with those aged 19+ the government will continue to fund 95% of the apprenticeship programme whilst a 5% investment is required by the employer.

Businesses can manage this through their Digital Apprenticeship Account – link here:

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