Drop out rate on Dundee student nursing courses reaches 40 per cent

11 March 2010

The drop out rate amongst student nurses attending adult and mental health courses at Dundee University has risen in the latest three years to 40 per cent, according to an answer to a Parliamentary Question tabled by Marlyn Glen.

The " attrition rate" for adult nursing was 35 per cent amongst those who began the three-year course in 2003-04.

It had risen to 40 per cent for who began the course in 2005-06

Over the same period, the attrition rate for mental health courses rose from 31 per cent to 39 per cent.

The attrition rate for those studying children’s nursing fluctuated from 20 to 24 per cent over the same timescale.

Ms. Glen said,

" In the latest year, priority has been given to reducing the attrition rate of student nursing courses through improvements in childcare assistance, better support during clinical placements, and career prospects

"I am asking the Scottish Government what progress is being made on these important matters to help retain student nurses.

" These, along with financial difficulties, are some of the main reasons cited by them for dropping out."

Ms, Glen said that the nursing intake at Dundee University for 2010-11 has been set at 441 places.

This is the same figure as in the previous year, but less than the intake of 472 three years ago.

She added,

"The NHS needs more nurses to address the long-term problem of an ageing workforce.

" RCN Scotland have indicated that one in every three community nurses in Scotland will reach retiral age in the next decade, while at the same time the demand for nursing services in the community will rise. "

The average cost of training a student nurse over the three year pre-registration course is over £40,000.


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