Return to Nursing

Return to Nursing

The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (NNUH) Return to Practice programme is run jointly with our education partners the University of East Anglia (UEA) and University of Suffolk (UOS) and aims to give you the confidence to adapt to changes in practice thus enabling you to re-awaken the knowledge you have and benefit from the wealth of experience that you have gained in those intervening years .

The programme is currently delivered twice a year in  February/March and September

We welcome applications  from adult and child field nurses (unfortunately there is no local programme for the return of midwives). The main requirement is that you share our passion for patient care (PRIDE values) and wish to work at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital on completion of the programme:


  • Your registration with the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC) has lapsed and you have not practiced as a Nurse in the last 3 years.
  • You wish to seek employment as a band 5 Nurse with the NNUH upon successful completion of the Return to Practice programme.


How long is the Return to Practice programme and how much practice do I need to complete in order to re-register?

The programme length is variable accordingly to how long you have been out of practice. Guidance from Health Education England recommends the following

  • 3 -7 years out of clinical practice – 150hrs (20 x 7.5 hour days)
  • 8 – 10 years out of clinical practice – 200hrs (27 x 7.5 hour days)
  • 10 – 15 years out of clinical practice – 275hrs (37 x 7.5 hour days)
  • 15 years or more – 375hours (50 x 7.5 hours)

What is the structure of the programme? 

  • You will complete a week long induction at the start of the programme
  • You need to complete approximately 15 hours of clinical practice per week (average 60 hours per 4 week period)
  • Each week for the first 10 weeks you will need to attend either a study day at the university or some on line learning activity
  • You will need to undertake personal study and complete several assignments; you will be supported by the RTP lecturers, your mentors in clinical practice and the Clinical Educator team.
  • You will need to complete the equivalent of four days on-line learning whilst on the RtP programme

Where will I get my clinical experience?

The practice element of the programme is undertaken in one clinical setting. We aim to offer you a placement in an area in which you may have had previous experience and are most likely to feel comfortable. However placement availability is dependent on total student numbers in that area. You will be supernumerary and therefore able to concentrate on your learning needs. There is a degree of flexibility in negotiating your shifts but you will need to undertake an average of 60 hours per month (15 hrs per week) to make the placement a worthwhile learning experience and work the majority of these shifts with your assigned mentor.

What else do I need to know?

You will be registered as a student with the education provider and undertake your placement at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (placement area dependent on student capacity).

We strongly recommend that you join the Nurse Bank as a Nursing Assistant prior to commencing the RTP programme. This will have several benefits including:

  • Gaining valuable experience and insight into the current role of a Staff Nurse in the acute hospital.
  • Gaining confidence in working in the current acute hospital environment and experience working in a range of clinical areas in the hospital.
  • Having an income whilst undertaking the RTP programme.
  • Developing relationships with managers in areas where you may wish to gain employment

Your RTP course fees will be paid and you will receive a £500 bursary when you commence the course

On completion of the RTP course you will be eligible to apply for a band 5 position within the Trust

You will be supported with our preceptorship programme during your first year

How do I apply?

The advert for RTP can be found on the hospital website under “working for us” or on the NHS jobs website You will need to complete an application form and will be shortlisted if you meet the criteria. Please note there is no job description or person specification for the RTP programme-please use your supporting statement to demonstrate why you would be suitable for the programme and employment at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. Please state clearly on your supporting statement which University you wish to undertake the RTP programme. UEA or UOS. Interviews will be conducted by a panelist representing the Practice Development and Education Department at the NNUH as well as the Return to Practice programme lead for the UEA or UOS.

What happens if I want to return to Nursing in another setting?

You should look for a RTP advert on the website of the organisation that you wish to work for. If this is not available contact the Education team in that organisation or you can get more information from the UEA or UOS

If you would like to know more about the programme before applying, please contact;

Stevie Savage,  Practice Development Nurse on 01603 289030 or email