AHP Support Workers

AHP Support Workers

Support workers, senior support workers, assistants and assistant practitioners work in, with and alongside the allied health professions (AHPs), providing high quality, life changing care across a range of acute and community services.

The national AHP Support Workforce have developed this short animation, which provides further information on the programme. You can also visit the HEE website by clicking here.

What is it like being an AHP Support Worker?

Ben
Physiotherapy Assistant Practitioner
Royal Papworth Hospital, Cambridge

Tell us about your role and the difference it makes to patient care?

Currently I work as a Physiotherapy Assistant Practitioner (PAP), however also studying a Masters Apprenticeship in Physiotherapy and Leadership. As a Practitioner I work on various wards such as Transplant, Thoracic, Chest medical unit and Cystic Fibrosis seeing various conditions in a Cardiothoracic setting.

The PAP role allows myself to have autonomy over my patients care to develop them to ensure safe discharge home. As a trust, patients get seen daily and having a PAP role alongside the Physiotherapy team allows all patients to gain adequate sessions and feel benefit from each session without much time restraints. The apprenticeship has allowed me to broaden my knowledge within Physiotherapy so that I can identify any potential deterioration and escalate to a Physiotherapist, however also it allows my clinical reasoning behind patient sessions to be improved leading to more diverse and specialist care.

 

What attracted you to being a support worker?

From completing a degree in Sport and Exercise science prior to joining Papworth, I have always wanted to use my knowledge and skills to help people who need it the most. Therefore a hospital role was appropriate for me. However due to knowing I needed further qualifications to develop and progress my career, a support worker role allowed me to gain access to the NHS in order to start that experience and career path.

 

What would you say to others to encourage more people to become AHP support workers?

It allows you to become more autonomous with patient care and treatment. It provides a pathway for career development. Don’t feel that at this role you are stuck, more options are becoming available for career development… be proactive!

Caroline
Occupational Therapy Housing Assistant
Cambridgeshire Community Services

Tell us about your role and the difference it makes to patient care?

I work as a support worker within our Housing team which helps support children with additional needs and their families to ensure their home is safe and accessible. We can also help support with re housing families if needed. We are part of a larger team of Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists within the community in Children’s Services.

What attracted you to being a support worker?

Being able to help people is hugely rewarding, being a support worker involves many skills and qualities and every day is different with new challenges. I really enjoy problem solving, whether I am supporting a family as an individual or as part of a wider team.

 

What would you say to others to encourage more people to become AHP support workers?

I would say ‘Go for it’ especially if you like variety, as no two days are the same, it can also open up more possibilities and opportunities.