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Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust

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Learning and Development

The development of our workforce is key to delivering caring, safe and excellent services to our patients.  Our trust is committed to offering development and learning opportunities for all employees. No matter where you start with the trust, you will have access to extra training and be given the opportunity to progress within the organisation.

You will receive an annual personal review and development plan to support your career progression.

You will be encouraged to extend your range of skills and knowledge and take on new responsibilities through the career framework.

The career framework has been designed to improve career development and job satisfaction for NHS employees.

It encourages you to learn new skills and take on extra responsibilities within the trust. Many employees take on additional responsibility within their own area, while others retrain and move in to different roles.

We provide access to a wide range of learning and development opportunities.These include clinical and professional development, vocational qualifications and leadership and management development. 

These are supported by library services at three locations and through reciprocal arrangements with other trusts.

Our Learning & Development Centre offers excellent training facilities for our staff.

We also deliver training sessions at other sites across Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Wiltshire to enhance the accessibility for everyone.

Opportunities available to you


All new employees will go through an induction process when commencing employment with the trust.  Providing a comprehensive induction to the trust is essential to ensure all new members of staff feel supported.  Induction is about:

  • Ensuring that all new employees are introduced effectively to the organisation
  • Employees new to a job are given the training and development they need to do that job.
  • Good management practice
  • Helping the individual perform effectively in their new post as soon as possible.

The aim of the induction programme is to assist all new members of staff, regardless of grade or profession, in the process of learning and developing, both personally and professionally, so they quickly become integrated into their role with the Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust.

Corporate Induction is mandatory and brings together new members of staff from all areas of the workforce (exc. junior medical staff).  It forms part of the Trust’s mandatory training and provides and introduction to Oxford Health, how we work and provides essential employment related information.  It covers key information such as the Trust’s aims and objectives, policies, procedures and health and safety.


What is preceptorship?

Preceptorship is a transition for newly registered practitioners, preceptorship supports you to develop your confidence as an independent professional and to refine your skills, values and behaviours.

We believe giving our staff extra support will provide them with a foundation for life-long learning, allowing them to provide effective patient centred care confidently.

Staff returning to practice and those from overseas can also benefit from the structure, support and competence gained from a preceptorship programme.

What are the benefits of preceptorship?

  • Support you to strengthen your knowledge and skills gained as a student or from previous experience
  • Develop competence and confidence in practice to meet the demands of your post
  • Lay a firm foundation in high quality practice and life-long learning 

Establish necessary skills and discipline for your professional development, especially for those who are required to produce evidence for revalidation.

Support you in evidencing and meeting the knowledge and skills related to core competencies required in your post, and for your first performance development review.

Oxford Health NHS FT recognises the challenges of starting in a new and the importance of effective preceptorship, so we have developed a unique preceptorship programme.

Newly registered nurses and Allied health professionals (AHPs)

We have developed the flyer programme for newly registered nurses and AHPs. The flyer programme has preceptorship at its heart but provides staff the opportunity to gain academic accreditation during the first preceptorship year, with the chance to gain further accreditation in their second year of qualifying.

The flyer programme framework has been developed with service leads, building on an evidence base provided by the Department of Health, Health Education England and regulatory bodies.

Returning to practice, change of role or overseas nurses and AHPs

We have a well-developed and supported preceptorship programme in place for staff who:

  • are returning to practice 
  • having a significant change of role
  • coming to OHFT from overseas. 

The programme is designed for all health and social care professions and is predominately service led. There are a number of resources and great support available to guide employees in their roles.

For more information about preceptorship and the flyer programme read our preceptorship programme leaflet.

Mentorship and Practice Learning

Oxford Health NHS FT is a teaching trust that provides many opportunities for learning safely in practice. The trust is committed to supporting pre and post-registration learners from a wide range of professions.

The Learning Environment Leads and Clinical Practice Educators work in partnership with many universities, practice assessors/mentors and students to provide high quality learning environments, support and excellent learning opportunities.

The trust is highly committed to developing its staff through Continued Professional Development. It has robust systems in place to support registered practitioners to access Mentorship/Practice Assessor courses to become NMC approved mentors or Allied Health Professional educators, therefore meeting regulatory, professional and revalidation standards.

All practitioners are encouraged and well supported to become mentors/practice assessors after successful completion of their Preceptorship Programme. Funding and access to Mentorship/Practice Assessor courses is available to staff to suit individual learning needs. These courses can be accessed on accredited, non-credited or distance learning routes from several universities. Once qualified as a mentor/practice assessor, practitioners can attend local updates and refreshers which are widely available throughout the trust.

Clinical Supervision

Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust is committed to ensuring that the services we provide are caring, safe and excellent. We recognise the value of clinical supervision in ensuring that our staff feel supported and developed to carry out their work in a safe and effective manner, improving the health of the populations we serve whilst looking after the wellbeing of our staff.

Our Learning and Development team offer a range of development opportunities from e-learning programmes to help staff get the most out of supervision to masterclasses for more experienced clinical supervisors. We have an on line recording system which will enable staff to access their own personal records of supervision to support their continuing professional development and to provide evidence for their professional revalidation requirements.

Please click here to view further information.

Return to Practice

Are you interested in returning to nursing or an Allied Health Profession?

Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust encourages and supports many people to return to nursing following a career break. The trust works in partnership with local universities to provide clinical placements for Return to Practice students for the duration of their academic programme. Whether you have only been out of practice for a short time or for several years we would be very keen to discuss with you your RTP placement requirements and any future career opportunities.

Providing you intend to work locally as a nurse on completion of your training you may well be eligible to have your university course fees paid by Health Education Thames Valley. Bursaries are also available through Health Education Thames Valley which may contribute towards child care costs or travel expenses.

For more information about return to nursing opportunities within Oxford Health please contact:

The trust works in partnership with Health Education Thames Valley and local universities who offer Return to nursing courses

Thames Valley – return to practice programmes

Bucks New University – Return to practice (Adult)

Oxford Brookes Return to Practice

Allied Health Professions

The trust has also supported a number of physiotherapists and occupational therapists to re-enter the Health Care Professional Council’s register by providing suitable supervised practice placements.

For an informal discussion regarding these opportunities please contact; – Clinical & Professional Development Manager

Leadership, Team and Individual Skills

The trust’s training covers all levels of staff and is delivered using formal development which may be sourced from:

  • In-house programmes
  • SHA coordinated programmes
  • Higher Education Institutes (Oxford Brookes, University of Bedfordshire or University of West London)
  • Specialist providers of professional bodies

Development requirements are identified on the basis of your needs and the needs of the organisation and patients through your PDR (Appraisal) with your manager.  The trust will always support staff members to learn new skills and to progress in the workplace.

We have courses covering a variety of areas:

Continuous Professional Development (CPD)

We believe continuous professional development is important and we fully support our staff to pursue further learning and development where possible.

The Learning and Development team have a variety of courses, training sessions and resources available for:

Clinicians (Band 2-9)

All staff in support roles (Band 1-4)

CPD requirements are identified on the basis of the needs of individuals, within the context of the needs of the organisation and patients. This is determined through the personal development review (PDR), which includes a personal development plan (PDP) agreed between the individual and their manager.

Funding for Vocational Qualifications and other development opportunities are available via Health Education Thames Valley for Bands 1 – 4.
Learning Beyond Registration (LBR) funding is also available from Health Education Thames Valley for the continuing professional development of staff in Bands 5 – 9 (excluding Doctors).


We value every employee working in every team across the organisation whether on the front line delivering acute services or supporting clinical teams behind the scenes. If you want to grow and develop your knowledge and skills and/or achieve a recognised qualification, Development opportunities are available to new and existing staff. We will support you to find out what’s available and what is best for you in your role now and support you to look to your future career plan

We can support you to achieve nationally recognised vocational qualifications (NVQs & Diplomas). These can sometimes be available as standalone qualifications however most are supported by the Apprenticeship route. Available in a variety of subjects from:

  • Clinical – Health and Social Care; Health; Allied Health Support
  • Non-clinical – Cleaning and support; business and administration; medical secretaries; support services; team leading; management to name a few.

Vocational qualifications are a mix of knowledge and competency based qualifications, some are   offered through our own L&D department and others are supported by a variety of training providers that work with us to deliver subject knowledge, guide and support you throughout the learning experience.

Health Care Assistant / Support Worker Induction and the Care Certificate

All new non-registered clinical staff will receive an induction to the Trust that enables them to complete or refresh the Care Certificate.

The Care Certificate is a national certificate, which was introduced to provide the public with assurance that the staff looking after them have been assessed as having the correct introductory skills, knowledge and behaviours to enable them to provide safe, compassionate, high quality care.

The Certificate consists of 15 standards assessed in practice by completion of a portfolio. Completing or refreshing the Care Certificate, your local induction and having support from your clinical team will enable you to build on your existing skills and develop skills and behaviours needed for a successful career with Oxford Health.

The Care Certificate will help you contribute to the Trust achieving its values of being Caring Safe and Excellent.

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