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Healthcare Pathway Pilot

NHS Scotland Academy, Skills Development Scotland (SDS) and health boards across NHS Scotland have developed a new pathway pilot that will provide high school students in S4, S5 and S6 with the opportunity to gain a formal qualification.

Once the qualification has been completed, students will receive a Level 5 qualification worth 24 Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF) credit points.

This will allow them to progress into a range of opportunities, including Healthcare Support Worker roles, modern apprenticeships and the opportunity to explore further routes into the health and care workforce.

What is the Healthcare Pathway Pilot?

This new and exciting Healthcare Pathway Pilot qualification will develop the transferable skills of young people to allow them to progress into a career as a Healthcare Support Worker and a key part of the wider health and social care workforce.

Through a range of face-to-face and online learning, learners will develop their transferable meta-skills, such as communication and problem solving, into skills that are beneficial and directly applicable to a career in health and social care.

The qualification includes 3 challenge projects;

  • Spaces and Places: Exploring the relationship between the physical environment (e.g. hospital or care home) and how people are cared for.
  • Community and Wellbeing: Learning about how health and care supports the wider community.
  • Creativity: Look at the creative solutions to a health/care challenges and understand the importance of creativity skills in the workforce.

What is a Healthcare Support Worker?

Healthcare Support Workers are an essential part of any multidisciplinary team, providing support to nurses, therapists, midwives, and other Health and Care professionals to deliver high quality person-centred care.

Who is the Healthcare Pathway Pilot for?

The Healthcare Pathway Pilot is running during the academic year of 2023-2024.

Those in S4, S5 and S6 located in selected schools across NHS Highland, NHS Dumfries and Galloway, NHS Tayside, NHS Grampian and the Clydebank area can take part in the pilot.


The following schools are currently participating in the pilot and recruiting learners: 

  • Highland: Culloden High, Golspie High, Wick High, Farr High
  • Tayside: Bertha Park School 
  • Clydebank: St Peter The Apostle High, Clydebank High

If you would like to find out more information or apply to take part in the Healthcare Pathway Pilot, contact your school guidance teacher, careers adviser or depute head.

You can also find out more about NHS Careers at and by following @NHSScotCareers on Twitter.

If you are unsure whether your school is participating or have any queries about the pilot, please contact us at

NHS Scotland Youth Academy

The NHS Scotland Academy is currently developing the NHS Scotland Youth Academy. This will provide Scotland’s young people the opportunity to develop the skills needed to join the NHS workforce, supporting the Scottish Government’s ambitions to improve youth employment.

For more information contact

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