SINGAPORE - Media OutReach - 15 October 2020 - The Healthcare Academy -- a collaboration by NTUC LearningHub (NTUC LHUB), Healthcare Services Employees' Union (HSEU) and NTUC's Employability and Employment Institute (e2i) -- today announced partnerships with Ngee Ann Polytechnic and Republic Polytechnic to leverage the expertise of each institution to enhance the quality of training and expand the nation's healthcare and community care competencies. These competencies will directly address skills gaps and talent needs arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the evolving health needs of Singaporeans as the healthcare industry continues its long-term shift towards preventive and community care. This will be done through well-rounded, collaborative training programmes offered as part of the Government's SGUnited Skills (SGUS) Programme.




The collaboration is also driven by a desire to upskill healthcare employees and expand their competencies, as more pressure is placed on the sector for care delivery and medical support[1]. This initiative also supports the nation's plan to build a pipeline of talent, who may not have prior healthcare industry experience, to join the sector [2].


Participants will be able to select from three tracks including Basic Care Assistant and Healthcare Assistant offered by Healthcare Academy and Ngee Ann Polytechnic's School of Health Sciences and School of Humanities & Social Sciences, and Community Care Workforce -- which includes care coordinators, health coaches and case managers -- by Healthcare Academy and Republic Polytechnic's School of Sports, Health and Leisure. These tracks were specially chosen to address both immediate and longer term needs of the community care sector.


In each of the three tracks, the modules and real-world practicum are curated to form a six-month-long programme. The fundamental skills acquired will enable participants to take on new roles in the healthcare sector, even if they have had no prior experience.


In addition, designed with the goal of improving the employability of participants, the SGUS Programme encompasses career advisory and employment facilitation efforts from NTUC LHUB to assist trainees in their job search in the healthcare sector.


"We are excited to partner Healthcare Academy to meet the nation's growing demand for healthcare services. Ngee Ann Polytechnic has been grooming compassionate and competent professionals for the sector through our School of Health Sciences since 2005. Together with our School of Humanities and Social Sciences, our programmes will offer additional multi-disciplinary skills in a blended learning environment most suited for adult learners. The launch of the SGUnited Skills Programme targeted at mid-career professionals will allow them to acquire expertise in key areas such as infection control, wellness and counselling, to help build a strong talent pool and a sustainable healthcare system," says Mr Clarence Ti, Principal of Ngee Ann Polytechnic.


Mr Yeo Li Pheow, Principal/ CEO, Republic Polytechnic, says, "We are pleased to collaborate with Healthcare Academy in delivering professional training for our healthcare workforce. Republic Polytechnic is well-positioned to support the increased need for healthcare and community care professionals, with our range of Pre-employment Training (PET) and Continuing Education and Training (CET) programmes that nurture a skilled healthcare workforce at any stage of their career. The SGUnited Skills Programme in Community Care and Health will enable healthcare professionals to upskill and expand their competencies in delivering high quality community care outcomes, while also allowing mid-career entrants to contribute towards Singapore's evolving healthcare needs." 


"The Healthcare Academy was established to support the continuous learning and career aspirations of healthcare employees, especially through changing times. This collaboration with like-minded partners such as Ngee Ann Polytechnic and Republic Polytechnic will help bolster existing efforts by Healthcare Academy to groom more healthcare employees and help sustain Singapore's world-class healthcare system. Through the three distinct healthcare tracks, we hope to generate more healthcare employees to thrive in a growing sector with numerous career opportunities," says Deputy Chairman of Healthcare Academy and CEO of NTUC LHUB, Kwek Kok Kwong.


"The Healthcare Academy endeavours to fulfil the healthcare sector's skills  development needs for healthcare employees in this era of industry transformation. In the last 3 years, we have offered several customised programmes for our healthcare employees. We are now rolling out programmes to train Singaporeans from other industry sectors to be well equipped with the skills, knowledge and competency to work in various healthcare institutions with the support of Skillsfuture Singapore (SSG) and e2i as well as in collaboration with Republic Polytechnic and Ngee Ann Polytechnic. Healthcare Services Employees' Union (HSEU) is indeed heartened to see the growth of the Healthcare Academy especially in supporting SGUS effort. We invite more Singaporeans to take up jobs in the healthcare sector for better career opportunity and job security through our employment and employability efforts," says Chairman of Healthcare Academy and President of HSEU, K Thanaletchimi.


Interested participants may apply for the programme via https://bit.ly/sgunitedskills.



[1] Baker, J.A. and Mohan, M. (2020) Stretched but coping: How Singapore's healthcare system has cranked up efforts to deal with COVID-19. Retrieved 24 September 2020, from https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/covid-19-singapore-health-capacity-hospitals-treatment-12698282

[2] Ang, P. (2020). 7,500 jobs and 1,600 training opportunities in healthcare sector to be created by end-2021. Retrieved 23 September 2020, from https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/health/7500-jobs-and-1600-training-opportunities-in-healthcare-sector-to-create-by-end


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