Mental health nurses are in high demand across the world. This is because of increasing cases of depression, stress, anxiety, and emotional imbalances to name a few. As a result, more and more healthcare institutions like nursing agency in Cambridge are heading towards recruiting mental health workers. If you want to take this situation to your advantage then you can plan a career as a mental health nurse. Here we discuss some of the common ways to become a mental health nurse in the UK.
The Common Ways to Become a Mental Health Nurse in the UK
You can become a registered mental health nurse or an RMN in the UK by successfully completing a degree in mental health nursing from a UK university. With more than 60 universities in the UK offering specialised programs in mental health nursing, you have the benefit of selecting among a wide range of universities.
The basic eligibility criteria for these courses is having a minimum of five GCSE grades between A*(9) and C(4), including math, science, English, and two/three A-Levels, including science and in any one of the health-related subjects. But remember, each university has its own set of criteria for entry requirements. Hence, you must contact the individual university before applying. You can apply to a university even if you possess a degree in another field.
Once your application is approved, you then have to gain a degree in pre-registration nursing specialising in mental health. After completing your qualifications, involving both practical and theoretical experience, you have to register with NMC or the Nursing and Midwifery Council. The registration needs renewal every year and revalidation every three years.
Alternate Ways to Become a Mental Health Nurse in the UK
The above-mentioned routes are the most common. There are other alternate routes also that can help you to become a mental health nurse. For those who do not have the desired grades at A-level, they can also take into account other qualifications. Some of these qualifications include :
Advanced/Scottish Highers, OCR Cambridge Technicals, Pearson BTEC Level 3 Diploma qualifications, Access Courses, and International Baccalaureate.
Nursing Degree Apprenticeship
You can also get into mental health nursing through nursing degree apprenticeships. This scheme was announced by the UK government first in 2014 and then in September 2017 to offer students the opportunity to earn while they learn, with a time gap between gaining theoretical knowledge of nursing as well as practical experience in the workplace. Such degrees are equivalent to degrees obtained at universities.
Another pathway to becoming a mental health nurse is the postgraduate route. In context to the decision of the UK government to scrap bursaries for the undergraduates, City University of London has introduced a novel scholarship exclusively for postgraduates applying for pre-registration in nursing courses. This initiative offers support to those who want to have a career in healthcare.
Return to Practice Courses
RTP or Return to Practice courses can offer a gateway to mental health nursing. Multiple universities in the UK offer these courses to help qualified nurses get back into the registration.
The above are the main ways to become a mental health nurse in the UK. Once qualified with six months experience you can register with a nursing agency in Cambridge. You just have to select your own preferred route from the above.