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Heywood, Middleton & Rochdale Primary Care Academy offers apprenticeships to broaden the scope of training and development for existing staff, attracting new people to improve diversity within the workplace and bridging gaps in Primary Care. They provide a future workforce for clinical and non-clinical roles, counteract an ageing workforce, and simplify career progression in the NHS.

Apprenticeship qualifications are available in many areas of Primary Care including Business Administration, Healthcare, Team Leading, Customer Service and Management.

Higher and degree apprenticeships bring together universities, employers, professional bodies and apprentices in a formal relationship to meet the economy's skills needs.  Apprenticeships are a priority for us and we are working with various providers to help deliver a range of apprenticeships driven by employer demand.

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Apprenticeship Levels

Apprenticeships are offered at different levels - with the most recent additions being degree and higher-level apprenticeships.

Equivalent Educational Level
GCSE (Or willing to work towards Maths & English qualification, alongside apprenticeship)
A Level
First Year of Degree Programme / Foundation Degree
Second Year of Degree Programme / Foundation Degree
Bachelors Degree Level
Masters Degree and PhD Level

Some apprenticeships may also give you an additional qualification, such as a diploma.

Who Can Apply?

You can apply for an apprenticeship while you’re still at school. To start one, you’ll need to be:

  • 16 or over by the end of the summer holidays

  • Living in England

  • Not in full-time education

Both new and existing staff can undertake an apprenticeship. There is no upper age limit. Apprentices must be aged 16 or older.

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Entry Requirements

As each type of apprenticeship offers a different-levelled qualification on the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF), their entry requirements will vary. Generally speaking, they are as follows:

  • To apply for an intermediate apprenticeship, you'll just need to be over 16 years old and no longer in full-time education.

  • For an advanced apprenticeship, you're likely to be asked for prior work experience and at least three A*-C or 9-4 grade GCSEs or equivalent - such as an intermediate apprenticeship qualification.

  • As higher apprenticeships are the equivalent of a foundation degree, HNC or first year of a Bachelor's, you'll usually need at least five A*-C or 9-4 grade GCSEs, as well as some Level 3 qualifications in relevant subjects, to apply. Your Level 3 qualifications could be AS-levels, a BTEC National or a Level 3 NVQ.

  • Degree apprenticeships will have the tightest entry requirements. These may include three A-levels in a specified grade range or a higher apprenticeship qualification, on top of at least five A*-C or 9-4 GCSE grades. It's likely you'll be required to have prior work experience.

The Apprenticeship Levy

The Apprenticeship Levy is a levy on UK employers to fund new apprenticeships. This is paid by employers with annual pay bills in excess of £3 million. Depending on if you pay the levy or not, this is how apprenticeship training is funded

Wage bill over £3 million?
  • You will pay a levy of 0.5% on all wage over £3 million

  • The money will be placed into a digital account

  • 100% of your course fees are paid from your digital account

Wage bill under £3 million with more than 50 employees?
  • You don’t pay the apprenticeship levy

  • 95% of apprenticeship course fees are paid by the government, you pay the remaining 5%

Wage bill under £3 million with less than 50 employees?
  • You don’t pay the apprenticeship levy

  • 100% of apprenticeship course fees are paid by the government for apprentices aged 16-18

  • 95% of apprenticeship course fees are paid by the government, you pay the remaining 5% for apprentices aged 18+



You can apply for apprenticeships at any time of year - whether you're successful depends on if an employer has a vacancy. You'll be able to check the specific entry requirements of your chosen apprenticeship once the position opens.

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How does a Primary Care organisation pay for training through the apprenticeship levy?

The plan by the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is that all employers have digital accounts by the end of 2019. A digital account is an online system that allows apprenticeship transactions to take place and levy payers to manage their levy budget.

Levy payers were the initial priority, but this is now being rolled out to all employers. Until an employer who is a non-levy payer has a digital account, employers must agree a payment schedule with their apprenticeship training provider and pay them directly.


What training can be funded through the apprenticeship levy?

You can only use funds in your account to pay for apprenticeship training and assessment for apprentices that work at least 50% of the time in England, and only up to the funding band maximum for that apprenticeship.

You cannot use funds for the following costs:

  • Wages

  • Statutory licences to practise

  • Travel and subsidiary costs

  • Work placement programmes

  • Setting up of an apprenticeship programme


What is a levy transfer?

A levy transfer is a process a levy payer that is not utilising their apprenticeship levy funds can access to pay for the apprenticeship training of another employer. If that employer is a non-levy payer, it also means that the employer can access the same training provision that levy payers can use.

There are many benefits to levy transfers and more information can be found at the following link:


Where can I find out more information?

Health Education England and Skills for Health have a dedicated website for apprenticeships in healthcare. This has updates on apprenticeship standards that have been approved, in development or being considered, toolkits and case studies. To find out more, visit:


Specifically, there is also a more detailed information pack for apprenticeships in primary care:

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Keep checking our website and social media for the most up-to-date information

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