Shropshire Star

Campaign launched to recruit more nurses

A campaign has been launched to recruit more nurses to work at Shropshire's two main hospitals.


Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH), which runs Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and Princess Royal Hospital in Telford, have launched one of their largest ever drives to attract nurses from across the West Midlands.

The campaign includes adverts on the back of buses that travel along the main routes in Shrewsbury, Telford, Stoke and Wolverhampton, posters and banners throughout the hospitals, adverts in the local press and targeted email and social media activity.

It is hoped the campaign will attract more bank nurses.

Bank staff can pick and mix their shifts to fit around their lifestyle and their roles generally mirror full time posts within the trust.

The trust’s electronic booking system for bank and temporary staff makes it easier and more efficient for staff to plan and book shifts.

Managers can advertise vacant shifts online in order for bank staff to view what is available and book themselves onto shifts from home.

Bank employees can also place their availability online so that managers and the temporary staffing team can identify people who might be able to fill shifts more easily

Winter is a busy time for hospitals and the SaTH wants to reduce its reliance on agency nurses by increasing its own bank of staff who can either work regularly or who can pick up shifts at short notice.

The trust’s total agency spend for April to August this year amounted to £7.7 million, £2.8 million above the agency cap set by NHS Improvement.

Previously hospital bosses said they spent £16.373 million on agency staff in 2015/16, a figure which is “too high”.

Health bosses said bank nursing is often seen as desirable due to the flexibility it can offer. Staff can also access the NHS pension scheme and other benefits.

Victoria Maher, workforce director at SaTH, said: “We have to use agency staff to ensure we have enough staff on duty to provide safe care for our patients, but we would rather use our own bank staff as much as possible, not just because of the cost but because they provide better continuity of care for our patients.

“While work continues on the sustainable services programme and we await developments to move it forward, we’re continuing our efforts to recruit staff at staff nurse and healthcare assistant recruitment days and if people can’t attend them, we offer individual interview dates.

“This nurse bank campaign complements the belong to something campaign we launched two years ago to promote the trust as widely as possible.”

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