What’s involved?

Medicine and adult nursing: You will be allocated a 3-hour shift on a ward for a 15-week period  where you will help staff with meal service.

Midwifery:  You will be allocated a 3-hour shift on the maternity wards for a 15 week period where you will gain a broad knowledge of the running of a busy maternity unit.

For some people, being in hospital may be stressful and the days can seem very long.  Spending time with patients is a very valuable thing to do.  Our volunteers really make a difference by giving time to patients who need a little more help or attention.

Our bedside companions cover one of four shifts: 08:00 – 11:00, 11:00 – 14:00, 14:00 – 17:00 and 17:00 – 20:00.  During these shifts they will focus entirely on the patients.

Under the direction of a registered nurse, the volunteer can:

  • Assist with meal service, delivering meals and encouraging patients to eat.  Cutting up food or opening packets as required.  Feeding patients that need that level of help.
  • Under the direction of staff, spend time with patients who would like someone to talk to or need distraction.
  • Read to the patient, quietly chat or simply hold their hand.
  • Assist with drinks and mouth care, where appropriate and after training.
  • Let staff know if the patient is uncomfortable or in pain.
  • Ensure patients are aware of the facilities available to them i.e. chaplaincy team and patient experience team
  • Request a visit on behalf of the patient from the chaplaincy team.
  • Request a visit on behalf of the patient from the Trust’s patient experience team.

In spending time talking to patients and staff, you will have an opportunity to improve your communication skills, to learn about multi-disciplinary working and understand the reality of medicine, nursing and midwifery as a career.
Medicine placements only: Towards the end of your placement there may be an opportunity for you to shadow a consultant  for half a day.  You will need to apply to do this at week 12 of your programme.    Each student that applies for a shadowing day will be offered one date at the convenience of the consultant.

At the end of your programme  you will be given a letter which will outline you duties and the dates you have been with us.  This is a useful piece of evidence for your UCAS application.

Our organisational values extend to our student programme and you will see how they fit in with the day to day operation of the hospital.
Our core values are:















Due to the limited number of places we can offer, we regret that we are unable to support any further education courses where placement is a requirement of the course. Find out more about the application process for:

Medicine and nursing placements
Midwifery placements