Health Education England has come together to launch a new pan-London consortium to coordinate the recruitment of international nurses.
Forming part of the CapitalNurse programme, the service will provide NHS trusts with a single point of access for recruiting overseas nurses, allowing them to source the very best staff from multiple countries and agencies at the same time, reducing costs while upholding ethical recruitment principles.
The new international recruitment service is the result of collaboration between Health Education England, NHS England and NHS Improvement, the London trusts and NHS London Procurement Partnership (NHS LPP).
The main CapitalNurse scheme was launched in 2015 to help ensure that London has the right number of nurses, with the right skills, in the right places.
Its new international recruitment consortium will increase ethical international recruitment and build partnerships with new countries, ensuring the supplying country benefits from the arrangement, as well as individual health worker and the NHS.
The collaboration represents the first time London trusts have come together in this way to jointly procure and manage international recruitment.
Six overseas recruitment agencies have been awarded contracts to deliver the service. The agencies will recruit overseas nurses over a year in three waves, including recruiting from India, the Philippines and the rest of the world.
A dedicated, senior contract manager has been recruited and will be hosted by NHS LPP, who have facilitated procurement for the consortium to manage all aspects of contracts and recruitment on behalf of trusts using the service.
The programme is being serviced through a website and portal. The website provides information for newly recruited overseas nurses or those looking to work in London, while a password protected portal will enable participating trusts to manage their recruitment pipeline and access resources.
This process ensures the consortium can recruit from more than one country and via more than one provider.
Trusts will then benefit from the reduction in agency costs through economies of scale, greater global access to recruiting overseas nurses and a consistent flow of overseas nurses for their organisations.
Lizzie Smith, London Regional Director, Health Education England, said: “One in three of London’s nurses are currently recruited from abroad. We expect this new service to boost nursing numbers, providing patients in London with high-quality, safe care.
“This initiative ensures that overseas nurses are employed with a standardised offer through the CapitalNurse scheme, with the same financial support and pastoral care, and that ethical recruitment principles are aligned across all London trusts.”
Michael Pace, Managing Director, NHS LPP added: “This is a new, innovative concept in collaborative procurement and is an excellent example of how NHS and health care organisations can work together, pan-London to achieve the best outcomes for everyone.
“It is also a clear demonstration of the many ways NHS LPP is supporting the NHS across our members to deliver the best care for patients in the changing environment.”