The latest data on university admissions published by UCAS shows there were 29,740 acceptances to nursing and midwifery courses in England – the highest number ever recorded.
This is 6,110 more than last year and an increase of 26 per cent.
It is thought that the heroic duties staff in the NHS have undertaken throughout the pandemic has influenced the increase in the number of applicants.
At the University of Wolverhampton, which has a campus in Telford, applications for nursing, midwifery or related health programmes have increased by more than 40 per cent for applications for 2020/21 academic year in comparison to the 2019/20 academic year.
Sharon Arkell, associate dean and director of the institute of health at university, said: “Health related careers are immensely rewarding and have been brought into the spotlight with the current coronavirus pandemic.
“It’s fantastic to see an increase in the number of prospective students from the local region interested in studying and having a career in nursing and other health related programmes.
“Local health care providers are working closely with the university to accommodate the increased student numbers, which will support them in meeting their future workforce requirements.”
Data from UCAS showed that the period during lockdown, from March 23 to June 30, saw nearly double the number of applications to nursing courses compared to the previous year.