New learning programme launches for UK health workers

Rutherford Health plc, a leading UK provider of advanced cancer services, has today launched a new educational platform to connect employees with industry-leading clinical and non-clinical training opportunities.

The programme, known as the Rutherford Academy, provides staff with access to a range of high-quality teaching courses and has been designed to take advantage of the Rutherford’s extensive network to support all staff, from new starters to senior leaders, and create opportunities for career progression and lifelong learning.

The Rutherford Academy offers staff access to a range of high-quality accredited and non-accredited opportunities, with training across a range of areas such as radiotherapy and oncology, as well as courses in leadership and management.

Rutherford Health, which operates a network of four advanced cancer centres across Wales, officially celebrates the launch of this programme during National Apprenticeship Week (taking place from 7 to 13 February), a week-long celebration of apprenticeships.

Kevin Solly, general manager of Rutherford Cancer Centres said: “We want to empower and continue to build our most precious resource – our team – to continually improve clinical outcomes and deliver exceptional experiences to patients and families. Education lies at the heart of that, so we are very proud to be launching our Rutherford Academy at a time when there are myriad opportunities to develop exciting careers in healthcare.  

“Our commitment to the continued training of our staff, existing and new, supports our vision to grow the skills pipeline, develop our workforce and build on our reputation as a leading education centre in cancer therapy.

“Supporting the value-driven aims of Rutherford Health, the Rutherford Academy is a platform which promotes the knowledge exchange of our partners, networks, staff and wider community to improve advancements in all areas of cancer care.”

Maddie Huse, an apprentice trainee oncology nurse at Rutherford Cancer Centre Thames Valley, is currently training to become a registered nurse through the Rutherford Academy.

“I previously worked as cabin crew for British Airways, but quite early on in the pandemic I was furloughed and I picked up overnight shifts at Tesco for about nine months. I then returned to British Airways but only for a few months and then I was furloughed again.

“This time round I wanted to do more, and I felt my calling was more on the medical side of things – but I was worried as I had very little training in this area. I applied for a job at the Rutherford’s centre in Reading and joined the team in February 2021 as a patient coordinator. I worked in this role for seven months and have now started a degree studying Adult Nursing at The University of West London. The Rutherford Academy is supporting me through my degree, and in three years I’ll become a registered nurse and I will specialise in oncology.

“I took a leap of faith when I joined the team at the Rutherford, and had no idea what career progression would be ahead of me. The Rutherford Academy has given me a whole career path I didn’t even know was possible for me. I am really grateful to be part of an organisation that is so committed to supporting its staff.”

Rutherford Health is the largest integrated network of proton beam therapy facilities in the world. The centre in Wales was the first to bring the treatment to the UK in 2018.