Funding for MSc Advanced Clinical Practice Programme – 2023 / 2024

The North West Faculty for Advancing Practice 2023 / 2024 funding request process will be as follows:

The original funding request was open from November 2022 until 15th February 2023.

We have now launched our waiting list which will prioritise specialist areas. Please note the waiting list applications are not guaranteed a funding offer even if the application meets all criteria due to our funding capacity. The waiting list is open until 17:00 on 29 September 2023.

For Primary Care submissions, please follow this link.

If you would like to make a submission from a Trust please discuss with your AP Lead within your trust. If you are unsure who this is, please contact .

Please find below our guide to implementing and funding advanced practice across the North West in PDF format and drop down.

A Guide to implementing and funding Advanced Practice



This North West guidance is to support organisations in the region to develop advanced practice across services and to help grow the advanced practice workforce of the future.

We want to thank our colleagues and partners who work with us. Our continued shared commitment and collaboration will mean we can make a difference for our region.

This document has been aligned to the Faculty for Advancing Practice across the South East and the South West, and we want to thank them for their continued collaboration.

Annabella Gloster

Faculty Lead, North West Region Faculty for Advancing Practice

About the North West Faculty for Advancing Practice

The North West Faculty for Advancing Practice was established during the latter part of 2020 to drive pioneering workforce transformation for advanced practice at a regional level, recognising the impact that advanced practitioners can have on workforce transformation, providing highly skilled care that can drive service redesign, enhance patient care, and improve outcomes. The function of our faculty is to provide regional leadership and promote advancing practice including advanced practitioners as part of national and regional workforce solutions and to enable practitioners to practice to their full potential. We are working across our local Integrated Care Systems to support transformation in practice.


Our vision is focused on creating and enabling transformative partnerships to develop, embed and sustain Advanced Practitioners across the north west who are fit for 21st century care and that appropriate use is made of their skills and expertise across an evolving health and social care system.


Our mission is to:

• provide regional leadership around the advanced practice national programme to drive change at a local level,

• ensure quality education and training is delivered for advanced practitioners to enable them to be fit for 21st-century care, so that their skills and expertise address patient service priorities and the needs of diverse populations,

• lead and promote advanced practitioners as part of workforce solutions that support service changes working with ICSs to identify demand, commission and support the supervisory needs of learners,

• provide greater connectivity across the health and social care system and across all relevant professions to improve the understanding, value and innovation that advancing practice roles can bring to deliver quality care and improve service provision for patients,

• enable the continuum of multi-professional clinical career paths through advancing practice and beyond.

Section 1 Advanced Clinical Practitioners in the Workforce

What is an advanced clinical practitioner?

The Faculty for Advancing Practice in the region will support the provision of advanced practice education and ACP workforce development which is consistent with the national definition of advanced clinical practice (ACP) contained in the Multi professional framework for Advancing Clinical Practice in England:

Advanced Practice (AP) is delivered by experienced, registered health care practitioners. It is a level of practice characterised by a high degree of autonomy and complex decision making. This is underpinned by a master’s level award or equivalent that encompasses the four pillars of clinical practice, leadership and management, education and research, with demonstration of core capabilities and area specific clinical competence.

Advanced Practice (AP) embodies the ability to manage clinical care in partnership with individuals, families and carers. It includes the analysis and synthesis of complex problems across a range of settings, enabling innovative solutions to enhance people’s experience and improved outcomes.

All health and care professionals working at the level of ACP should ensure that their knowledge and skills meet the standards outlined within the Framework.

The four pillars that underpin practice are:

• Clinical Practice

• Leadership and Management

• Education

• Research

How do I know if I need an advanced clinical practitioner role in my service?

For successful delivery of high quality services that are focused on meeting the person or population need, it is important that a structured workforce planning process is used to identify where advanced practice will have the greatest impact in a person’s journey through health and care pathways, and the types of roles that may exist or need to be developed. Many workforce planning and modelling tools exist which will support understanding of the needs of the population and how to build a workforce to meet those needs. The HEE Star Tool supports workforce transformation and helps providers understand their workforce requirements and through providing a range of potential solutions.

How do I develop an advanced clinical practitioner role?

The Advanced Practice (AP) Lead in the organisation should be aware of staff currently working in advanced practice roles and provide advice of how they may transform services. In order to establish advanced clinical practice (ACP) roles, a business case will be required for this investment considering the population and system need. Job descriptions should be mapped to the ACP Multi-Professional Framework and job plans should support the four pillars of advanced practice. The HEE ACP Toolkit has further resources to support with the development of ACP roles.

Section 2 Commitments required for ACP Training

What commitment is expected of a trainee ACP while studying?

Trainees are required to attend university teaching days and undertake work-based place learning and assessment of identified competencies. It is expected that each trainee will dedicate many hours to independent study to successfully complete the masters programme.

What commitment does the trainee require from the employer?

For trainees on the MSc Advanced Clinical Practice programme, employers are expected to support the trainee(s) to meet the requirements of the ACP programme as per HEI requirements.  The employer will provide the trainee with sufficient study leave and protected time for workbased learning per week. The HEI (Higher Education Institute) programme lead will provide information on the total amount of study days required. It is therefore important that ACP trainees have sufficient work-based learning time to develop their advanced skills.

What support does the trainee require from the employer?

They require a supervisor in practice who will oversee and coordinate the work-based learning which will require time to meet with them regularly to plan their individual educational needs and monitor their progress.

How many hours does the trainee need to be employed for?

Trainees will be contracted to work a minimum number of 30 hours in order to meet the requirements of the programme and to meet apprenticeship requirements.

What supervision is required?

Good supervision is a key factor for successful completion of training and trainees who are not well supervised can struggle and withdraw from the programme. Each trainee ACP requires a named supervisor who has completed training in multi-professional supervision and is familiar with the requirements of advanced clinical practice. Supervisors must be willing and have protected time (in their job plan) to support the trainee. Trainees will need time to meet their supervisor regularly to plan their individual educational needs and monitor their progress. The requirements of supervisors are explained in more detail in the Workplace Supervision for Advanced Clinical Practice and videos

Section 3 HEE funding

HEE North West Faculty for Advancing Practice support the development of Advancing Practice roles for workforce transformation by funding educational routes allocated to employers to address their population/service need. Funding for the MSc Advanced Clinical Practice is not available for individual/s’ continual professional development.

What are the conditions of receiving funding?

Substantive funding arrangements must be in place to ensure that an appropriate Advanced Practice post will be available with the employer once the trainees have successfully completed their training.

What is the NW offer for Autumn 23 – Spring 24?

HEE is supporting the development of ACP roles in 23/24 by offering a package of funding. There are four potential options and employers are invited to put forward requests for funding, subject to HEE budget constraints, under one of the following offers available:

1. ACP MSc – Funding for tuition fees for a period of up to three years for an Advanced Clinical Practice MSc. HEE will pay the full tuition costs plus an education training grant. The education grant is £30000 in total, per individual paid directly to the employer. £2,600 of the education grant must be made available at service level to directly support the supervision of the trainee per year.

2. ACP Apprenticeship – Funding for an Advanced Clinical Practice Integrated Degree Apprenticeship programme that has a typical length of 36 months is paid via the apprenticeship levy1. HEE will pay the employer an education training grant to support the training. The education grant is £30000 in total, per individual paid directly to the employer. £2,600 of the education grant must be made available at service level to directly support the supervision of the trainee.

3. ACP Top Up Modules – for those requiring up to three modules with completion of the MSc Advanced Clinical Practice within the academic year. HEE will only fund the tuition costs directly to the HEI.

If more than three modules are required to complete the MSc Advanced Clinical Practice the request should be for funding of a full MSc programme and the learner has prior L7 credits such as Non-Medical prescribing (NMP). The learner should discuss

Accredited Prior Learning with their chosen Education Provider, with the potential of reducing the length of a full programme.

4. ACP Credential – There are a number of HEE endorsed specialty credentials in development that meet workforce development needs in high-priority areas. HEE will consider funding a credential as an addition to the ACP MSc to meet the specialised training needs of your workforce as these become available.

The apprenticeship pathway will be the preferred funding route with exceptions for the fees funded route where appropriate for:

• specialist training pathways which may not be offered via this route

• for non-levy paying organisations where levy transfer or reserve government co-investment has not been possible.

• If the recruited trainee is not suitable for the apprenticeship pathway

** Please see PDF for the table including the HEI information **

What is the Education Training Grant ?

The educational training grant is to ensure there is infrastructure around the trainee which enables their supported learning in practice.

Examples include to:

• enable regular clinical supervision between trainee and supervisor

• develop robust governance structures for the training, supervision, and development of advanced practitioner’s posts

• develop in-house educational resources to support advanced practitioners’ development

• enable trainees to attend and present at local/national conferences

• enable trainees to attend academic study days

• Trainees have a minimum of one hour supervision per week by an appropriately trained supervisor and a minimum of £2,600 per year of the educational training grant used to support the funding for supervisory support.

Section 4 Additional Information for Apprenticeship Programmes

What are the different ways to fund the apprenticeship pathway?

There are three ways to access funding to pay for apprenticeship training fees and assessment (this funding does not cover salary costs – employers must fund the apprentice’s salary):

Apprenticeship Levy. Employers with a pay bill over £3 million each year, pay the apprenticeship levy. Levy paying employers can spend their apprenticeship levy funding on apprenticeship training. You can contact your apprenticeship lead.

Levy Transfers. Levy paying employers can transfer some of their annual levy to other employers. These transfers cover 100% of the training costs of the apprenticeship (you still need to cover salary).

Reserve government co-investment. If you don’t pay the apprenticeship levy you can reserve funding, where the government pays 95% of the training costs and the employer pays the remaining 5%. HEE will fund the 5% employer cost (training cost £600) if a reserve government co-investment is used. This is a one-off cost and will be paid to the employer with the payment that covers the end of the first year of training. It is the organisation’s responsibility to agree the payment schedule of the 5% to the HEI and then make the necessary payments.

What steps are needed if a Levy Transfers or Reservation of Funds co-investment is required

• You must contact the North West Widening Participation Team at the earliest opportunity on

• Levy transfers are not guaranteed and cannot be implemented retrospectively – they must be in place before the person begins their apprenticeship.

• You can apply to the chosen Higher Education Institute for the apprenticeship, but you must not complete the HEI registration process until you have received confirmation that a levy transfer is in place.

What are the employers’ responsibilities for the apprenticeship route?

There are various apprenticeship rules that must be adhered to by the employer and the apprenticeship training provider. These include:

• The apprentice must be employed with you.

• The apprentice must be able to complete the apprenticeship within the time they have available.

• Apprentices should not be asked to contribute financially to the cost of training, on programme or end-point assessment (this includes where the individual has completed the programme successfully or left the programme early).

• Apprentices must not use a student loan to pay for their apprenticeship.

• Apprentices must spend at least 50% of their working hours in England over the duration of the apprenticeship.

• Apprentices must have the right to work in England and have an eligible residency status.

• The job the apprentice is doing must have a productive purpose and should provide the apprentice with the opportunity to embed and consolidate the knowledge, skills and behaviours gained through the apprenticeship.

• As an employer you must allow the apprentice time to complete their programme of study and allow them access to opportunities

to enable them to develop through their job role.

• As an employer you must ensure the apprentice has a suitable contract that covers the duration of their apprenticeship (including

end point assessment).

• The cost of the apprentice’s wages must be met by the employer.

• Apprentices must complete their apprenticeship (including any training) during paid working hours.

• Apprentices must spend at least 20% of their working hours doing OTJ training.

• The apprentice must work enough hours each week so that they can undertake sufficient regular training and on-the-job activity

this is to ensure the apprentice is likely to successfully complete their apprenticeship.

• The apprentice must have appropriate support and supervision on the job, by the employer, to carry out their job role and their


• Further information about employer and apprenticeship training provider responsibilities can be found on the Government

Website: ESFA Funding Rules.

Where can I get additional information from?

• Further information about apprenticeships can be found at the HASO Website

Section 5  HEE funding Funding Request process

** Please see PDF for the table including the key dates of the annual expression of interest application process **

Please note that the late submission and waiting list is not guaranteed if all funding has been allocated.

Prior to submission you need to ensure the following is in place:

·        There has been an identified service/local population need for the development of an Advanced Practitioner

The role on qualification, links directly to the key principles in the Health Education England Multi-professional framework for advanced clinical practice in England (2017)

·        a business case or equivalent has been approved for the funding of a substantive Advanced Practice Level role on qualification

·        a positive learning environment with a named identified supervisor and agreed supervision plan (providing at least one hour supervision per week),

·        The employer has an identified lead for Advanced Clinical Practice or an accountable person for the workforce

HEE NW AP Faculty can guide your organisation in embedding the appropriate governance required to receive HEE funding for ACP MSc programme for further information please contact

Where do I go to submit my expression of interest:

There are two ways as detailed below

·        Primary Care (not including NHS Trusts), Private and Charity – please access all our information and application form on our webpage

·              Primary Care services can contact their local Primary Care Training Hub. You can access their websites below:

o   Cheshire and Merseyside Training Hub

o   Greater Manchester Training Hub

o   Lancashire and South Cumbria Training Hub

·        NHS Trusts – please contact your AP Lead. If you are unaware of who this is please contact us

Section 6  Higher Education Institutes (HEI) and their application process

If the employer/service is offered HEE funding what are the next steps:

HEE will provide you the next steps within the funding offer. This will include steps of contacting the Programme Lead of the HEI to agree tri-partite recruitment. They will also advise of the application documentation that needs to be submitted.  

** Please see PDF for the table including HEI preferred supplier list **

Section 7  Education Training Grant

How will HEE pay the education training grant be paid

HEE pay in arrears and based on a validation process. Therefore if the trainee commences in September 2023 then the first payment will not be until February 2024. Payment is completed differently depending on the employer

·       NHS Trusts – this will be paid directly to the Trust from HEE through the Education Contract. Please contact your Advanced Practice Lead to understand how this is transferred to your service budget

·       Non NHS Trust – HEE will contact directly with the details you provide on the expression of interest application to invite an invoice.

** Please see PDF for the payment timelines table**