Special arrangements have been put in place for second and third year students in England to be paid while on placement to support the NHS during the pandemic.
Special funding has been made available to provide students with employment contracts and provide death in service benefits. Universities are encouraged to alter programmes to allow students to "contribute to supporting services while continuing with their education and placement hours."
Education providers are also being encouraged to give priority to enabling third-year students to qualify as soon as possible and join the HCPC register.
The arrangements in the Option for Planned Placements document have been agreed between unions and employers, the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC), Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), Health Education England (HEE), and the Council of Deans of Health.
"It was agreed that there was a clear need to expand capacity and provide... additional healthcare professionals," the statement says.
"Offering students a full normal placement experience with normal supervision and assessment would be very challenging owing to pressures on service and service reconfiguration."
The special arrangements will be reviewed in June 2020 with a view to ending them at the conclusion of the 2020 Summer term.