BNU awarded £2m to develop nursing, midwifery and paramedicine facilities
Buckinghamshire New University has been awarded a capital funding grant of £2m by the Office for Students, to help develop its allied health offering through the Institute for Health and Social Care.
The grant will fund an extensive step change in the technological base of the university’s learning and teaching of nursing, midwifery and paramedicine this year, advancing students’ skillsets and enhancing graduates’ employability.
The grant will be used to:
• Purchase virtual reality technology to expand simulation facilities;
• Refurbish an area of Aylesbury campus to create a Centre of Excellence for Digital Health, working with NHS Trusts and the Bucks Health and Social Care Academy; and
• Invest in technology which allows students on different campuses and on placements to participate in synchronous learning and teaching.
The university’s Institute for Health and Social Care (IHSC) was set up in 2020 to find innovative solutions to ongoing sector challenges, through its educational activities and by collaborating with local agencies, including the NHS, councils, Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership, and others.
The £2m award will help to cement the Institute as the beating heart of health and social care education across London and the South East, particularly in addressing sector challenges such as national workforce shortages, engaging in greater interprofessional learning, and advancing digital health skills.
This latest funding follows significant investment from the university in recent years towards its health and social care provision. Since 2018, more than £800k has been spent on the Aylesbury nursing campus, nearly £300k on paramedic science equipment, and £177k on nursing simulation and practice-based learning.
Margaret Rioga, Head of Practice Learning for Health and Social Care for IHSC, said: “The new digital hub in Aylesbury will transform the learning experience for our students by bringing the clinical environment into the classroom whilst also enhancing their digital literacy making them a healthcare professional for the future. It is such an exciting time for healthcare and technology, and we are so privileged to bring this innovation into the classroom so that our students can experience this new way of learning which is immersive and enhances health and social care for our local communities.”