Published on: 14 October 2019


Pictured (left to right): Laura Fahy (Integrated Therapies), Laura Brewer (Speech and Language Therapy), Tara Culshaw (Stroke Therapy), Lauren Doyle (Stroke Therapy) and Lindsey Dyer (Stroke Therapy)

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust is celebrating the success of five therapy staff who recently graduated from the University of Central Lancashire’s Burnley campus after earning Assistant Practitioners in Health and Social Care degrees.

The Trust’s newly qualified Assistant Practitioners completing the two-year foundation degree course are Laura Fahy (Integrated Therapies), Laura Brewer (Speech and Language Therapy), Tara Culshaw (Stroke Therapy), Lauren Doyle (Stroke Therapy) and Lindsey Dyer (Stroke Therapy).

All five graduates began their studies as Trainee Assistant Practitioners in 2017, successfully completing the Assistant Practitioner degree course this summer.

Professor Damian Riley, Acting Chief Executive of East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust said: “On behalf of the Trust I congratulate each of the new Assistant Practitioners on their well-deserved degrees.”

“The success of the Assistant Practitioner qualification is evidence that, in partnership with UCLan, we are producing the next generation of caring and competent NHS staff who provide high-quality healthcare for our patients.“

With an ageing population and increasing demands on the NHS, Assistant Practitioners and other support workers represent more than one in three NHS staff who assist doctors, nurses and registered therapists in delivering face-to-face patient care.

“Being a mature student, the 2-year degree programme has been a fantastic opportunity for me to succeed in order to further my career,” says Assistant Practitioner Lindsey Dyer, a member of the Integrated Stroke Therapy team based at Pendle Community Hospital.

“Having completed the degree I feel a more confident and competent Assistant Practitioner. There have challenges finding time for family and study, together with a full-time job; however, I feel a real sense of achievement both personally and professionally and a commitment to the Stroke team and East Lancashire Hospitals to whom I am extremely grateful for their continual support.”

East Lancashire Hospitals is a regional pioneer for Assistant Practitioners with more than 50 staff graduating into this new role since 2010.

Julia Owen, ELHT’s new Associate Director of Education said: “Congratulations to our new Assistant Practitioners of whom we are very proud.

“In recent years the Trust has encouraged staff to take next step in their careers as Assistant Practitioners and our latest graduates can look forward to long, successful and satisfying careers with East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust.”