latest health care news

10.10.19

Bedford Hospital recruits Australian nurses to address staff shortages

After Brexit uncertainty saw nearly all of its Spanish nursing staff leave in February, Bedford Hospital launched a successful recruitment drive which will now see some 237 Australian nurses arrive to work at the hospital.

Councillors in the Bedford Borough have said that the Australian additions – the first of which are due to start work in December – will allow the site to hospital to run in surplus following a nursing shortage.

The council’s health overview and scrutiny committee heard the NHS hospital had been suffering from a nursing shortage of “about 24%” six month ago.

READ MORE: Massive staff shortages predicted for NHS and social care

READ MORE: NHS England offers agencies £100m for overseas GP recruitment effort

Director of nursing at the hospital, Deidre Fowler, said: “It’s a very positive outlook from a nursing perspective.”

Ms Fowler explained that the new staff could expect to be “double-rostered” with other Bedford Hospital staff at first, in order to orientate themselves.

A hospital spokesperson said the offers of work to the 237 Australian nurses were provisional and dependent on pre-employment checks.

They were expected to take up their posts in batches over the next 12-18 months.

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