Returning to nursing
In partnership with the NHS
Returning to your career in nursing is easy
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Do I need to retrain?
If your registration has lapsed, you will have to complete an NMC-approved return-to-practice (RtP) course which takes between three and 12 months to complete. There are RtP nursing programmes and specific RtP general practice nursing programmes available. The longer you have been out of practice, the more practice hours you will need to complete.
If you have been out of clinical practice but your registration is still active, you can apply for a post and establish if you can be supported by a preceptorship programme. The programme will support you to update your skills and knowledge and ensure that you are job-ready.
Will my course be funded?
Yes, Health Education England will pay your course fees and clinical placement fee. A £500 stipendiary is also provided to help towards travel, childcare and book costs. The university return-to-practice lead will be able to provide further details at your interview.
Will the course lead directly to a job once I complete it?
Many organisations now offer RtP placements that lead to a permanent position, but it is entirely dependent on each organisation and it is advisable to explore this further at your interview. In some areas, there is an employer-led RtP programme, where you are employed as a return-to-practice nurse, normally on band 3, and are guaranteed a post once you have successfully completed the programme.
How long will the course be?
The return-to-practice programme can take three to 12 months to complete, and is a combination of classroom and placement-based learning. The hours you spend on placement will vary, depending on how long you have been off the register. You will negotiate this when you apply.
How do I find out about courses in my area?
Use the course finder to find return to nursing practice and RtP – general practice nursing programmes where you live or want to study.