Overseas nurses on way to west Sussex
Nurses from the continent are heading to hospitals in Worthing and Chichester after an overseas recruitment drive.
So far 64 nurses have accepted offers to work for Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, most of them from Spain, with the first arriving “within weeks”.
Getting more permanent nursing staff will lead to “greater consistency of care” and mean the trust will be able to reduce agency staff spending.
The recruits have been “carefully assessed not just for their professional skills, but also for their ability to communicate”, the trust said.
In late 2013 the trust also ran a local recruitment drive for newly-qualified nurses, taking on 34.
Sandie Ellard, deputy director of nursing, said: “We are delighted that so many new colleagues will be joining us in the next few months, and we are really looking forward to welcoming them.
“Over the last five years we have invested heavily, and significantly increased the number of nurses and healthcare assistants on our wards. Our staffing numbers compare well with other hospitals, but we can still do more.”
She added: “Our last really big overseas recruitment drive was more than 10 years ago now, in the Philippines, and many of those people are still with us today.”
The new staff were recruited following a recent visit to Bilbao by senior nurses from the trust.
Western Sussex said there were significantly more nurses employed than when it was formed in 2009. It also highlighted that late last year the trust’s board opted to spend £500,000 to increase staffing levels at night.