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  1. ITV Report

First graduates of Addenbrooke's hospital apprenticeship scheme tackling national nursing shortage

  • Video report by ITV Anglia's Matthew Hudson

The first students of a new apprenticeship degree scheme to train nurses in Cambridge have graduated.

The scheme is part of a new initiative to tackle the nursing shortages facing hospitals.

The four-year course is divided into studying in the classroom at Anglia Ruskin University and hands on experience on the wards at Addenbrooke's hospital.

Emma Burgess is one of 17 graduates Credit: ITV Anglia

Students are paid an annual salary and tuition fees are covered by the Trust as part of the scheme.

Today, 17 students gradated, all of which have previously worked in healthcare.

Daniel Maycock was a health support worker who wanted a new challenge and career path.

He said: "I saw the opportunity advertised through the hospital and I was already working here and I thought this is such a good opportunity I can't possibly turn it down.

"To get paid whilst studying was such a fantastic opportunity for me and I grasped it and made the best of it."

The course lasts for four years Credit: ITV Anglia

Addenbrooke's has 6 per cent vacancies and plans to produce 100 new nurses every year using this scheme.

The Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Trust says it is hoping to expand the scheme, offering 100 places a year to address the shortages.

For various reasons a traditional route into nursing wasn't open to them.

That could be due to financial commitments, it could be family commitments and what we're seeing now are people who are able to earn while they learn and it's opened the door to so many more people that can take up their nursing career.

– Lorraine Szeremeta Chief Nurse, Cambridge University Hospital