The care of patients with dementia and complex health needs has been given priority in plans to improve the training, values and education of National Health Service staff.

The government's mandate to Health Education England (HEE) - a new arm's length body with responsibility for NHS education and training - has called for foundation level dementia training for at least 100,000 staff by March 2014, with plans in place to expand this further later this year.

In addition, there is a commitment to training a multidisciplinary workforce able to work in both hospitals and the community, with a target of 50% of medical students becoming GPs and more nurses trained in the community.

Elsewhere, to help drive a culture change in the health service to avoid care scandals such as that seen at Mid-Staffordshire Trust, recruitment to all NHS-funded training must be based on values and behaviours as well as technical and academic skills by March 2015, the government said.

HEE - which is backed by central funding of £5 billion a year - has also been tasked with ensuring that sufficient midwives and other maternity staff are trained and available to provide personalised one-to-one care for every woman throughout pregnancy, childbirth and during the post-natal period.

“As people are living longer with more complex medical and care needs, so must we ensure that our NHS workforce has the right skills and values to provide more care in the community for older patients as well as to give each and every child the very best start in life," said health minister Dan Poulter.

"Plans for the future training and recruitment of our NHS will lead to better working lives for staff and better care for patients", he added.