Launch of Nursing Assistant Resources

Date published: 21 February 2018

The Department of Health has today launched a suite of resources for Nursing Assistants employed by Health and Social Care (HSC) Trusts in Northern Ireland.

Standards for Nursing Assistants

Chief Nursing Officer, Charlotte McArdle took the opportunity to announce the new resources during her attendance at the Northern Ireland Practice and Education Council (NIPEC) Annual Conference in Craigavon – Enabling Professionalism.

The measures include new Standards for Nursing Assistants and an Induction and Development Pathway.

Delivering the key note address at today’s Conference, Professor McArdle said: “Nursing Assistants play a vital role in supporting Registered Nurses in the provision of nursing care, and these new resources recognise and endorse the valuable contribution made by this group of staff within the nursing workforce.

“The new Induction and Development Pathway will also promote consistent development and support of the role across the Health and Social Care system to maximise the skills and competencies of Nursing Assistants and facilitate career progression options.”

Continuing Charlotte said: “Nursing Assistants equate to over 4000 staff in the HSC. They fulfil a vital and valuable role in supporting the registered nursing workforce in the provision of nursing care, and, as Chief Nursing Officer I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank them for the job that they do.

“The new measures being introduced were commissioned by the Department and led by NIPEC. It is timely that we have been able to announce these at the Enabling Professionalism Conference today. The resources will serve to recognise and endorse the important contribution made by this group of staff in the delivery of safe, high quality care, working under the delegated supervision of the registered nurse.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. The new title is ‘Nursing Assistant’, in recognition of this role within the Nursing workforce. This will replace the Health Care Assistant title for all those working in Nursing Teams. Those in Band 3 roles will be known as ‘Senior Nursing Assistants’ in recognition of their wider skill set. 
  2. The Department of Health is setting up a task and finish implementation group to progress the roll out and implementation of the Standards for Nursing Assistants and associated resources across the HSC – nominations for this group will be sought from across the Trusts.
  3. The Standards for Nursing Assistants and the Induction and Development Pathway can be accessed on the Department of Health website.
  4. For media queries please contact the Department of Health Press Office on 028 9052 0575 or email For out of hours please contact the Duty Press Office via pager number 07623 974383 and your call will be returned. Follow us on twitter @healthdpt.

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