A north-east health board has formed a new group to look at its links with the education sector.
The NHS Grampian Education Recovery Group has been set up as part of efforts to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.
The health board supports a number of students through their studies, including providing valuable work placements for those attending Robert Gordon University (RGU) and Aberdeen University.
It has said the group will support all learners to meet their educational needs and curricular requirements, maintain the safety of clinical environments and work in collaboration with partner organisations.
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A statement from NHS Grampian said: “As part of the organisational recovery from Covid-19, we have emphasised our commitment to education.
“As an education provider, we will support all learners, many of whom are core, critical staff.
“Our education responsibilities cover diverse undergraduate and postgraduate programmes as well as systems of continuing professional development.
“A priority in this recovery phase is how we welcome back undergraduate groups including all of our nursing, midwifery, medical, dental, allied health professional and pharmacy students.
“An NHS Grampian Education Recovery Group (ERG) has been established to lead and co-ordinate this work.
“Our clinical workplaces are a core learning environment for many of our undergraduate learners. Service disruption and the requirements for physical distancing mean there will be a gap between what we have provided in the past and what will now be available.
“We need to define this gap and work out innovative ways of filling it; this will work best with everyone’s input. With this in mind, all clinical staff are encouraged to discuss these issues within their services so that education recovery is central to wider service recovery plans.
“Services will be asked to work with the ERG to provide an assessment of their capacity to deliver education and their education needs. Our students and trainees today will be our colleagues tomorrow.
“Education is succession planning, and succession planning is vital for us to continue looking after our patients safely in the future.”
A statement from Robert Gordon University (RGU) said: “We are pleased to collaborate with the NHS Grampian Education Recovery Group to ensure our students have a high quality learning experience and benefit from practical learning in safe clinical settings.
“A practical learning experience is essential to equip our students with the knowledge and skills to contribute to the vital delivery of healthcare in Scotland.”