Allied health professionals will be among the groups to benefit from a new £5million funding pot to support people hoping to return to work following a career break.
The scheme is part of the government’s strategy to support parents and carers returning to work, build home-grown skills, and close the gender pay gap.
300 AHPs, 50 civil servants and 100 social workers will be supported with funding as part of the initial roll out.
The placements will include education, re-training and tailored support with the aim of returners ready to practice within six to 12 months.
The programme will open for applications later this year. It is intended to help develop best practice on what works to support career returners back to work most effectively. The Government Equalities Office has also launched a public call for evidence to allow individuals and employers to contribute to its understanding of how best to support people returning to work.
The call for evidence will run for eight weeks, concluding on 29 October. It will be an opportunity for returners, employers and the wider public to inform the government’s future plans on returners.
Minister of State for Apprenticeships, Skills and Women Anne Milton, commented, “Millions of us need to take time out from our careers, but it can be really hard to return.
“This is bad for the people affected, and the businesses who miss out on their talents. Women in particular find the routes back into employment closed off after taking time out to start a family.
“These returner programmes will make it routine for women to go back to the workplace and get on with their careers.”
Minister of State for Health Philip Dunne said, “Former allied health professionals have the talent and experience the NHS needs, so we absolutely want to encourage them to return to work.”
Professor Lisa Bayliss-Pratt, Director of Nursing and Deputy Director Education and Quality at HEE added, “HEE is extremely pleased to be able support AHPs back into our NHS as we know they contribute expert skills across the whole health and care system.
“Clinicians of all backgrounds returning to practice have a vital role to play in our NHS, as they tend to be more experienced and highly skilled.”