A recruitment drive at a hospital trust in Sussex has seen 50 new nurses offered jobs at the organisation, as part of efforts to tackle the high vacancy rate for registrants in the surrounding area.
It is hoped the nurses, who are expected to work at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s Worthing Hospital and St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester, will also soon be joined by a further 100 recruits from abroad.
“Our staffing numbers compare well with other hospitals, but we can still do more”
The trust is running a major campaign – including international efforts – to help bring down the local vacancy rate, which in Kent, Surrey and Sussex currently stands at 2,000 empty nursing posts.
As a result, for the first time in a decade, the Sussex trust said it will be sending senior nurses to the Philippines this month to find 100 more nurses.
It is also continuing its efforts at home, by holding further recruitment days in the local area beginning with an event at Worthing Hospital on 22 July.
The trust said it currently maintains safe staffing levels by using temporary staff, but that this is costly and reduces continuity of care.
Director of nursing Amanda Parker, said: “Over the last six years we have invested heavily, and significantly increased the number of nurses and healthcare assistants on our wards, but it is not possible to meet demand for nurses from those just trained here.”
She added: “Our staffing numbers compare well with other hospitals, but we can still do more - our new colleagues will mean that we will have even more permanent staff, able to give patients the best possible care.”