A MAJOR initiative is under way to recruit healthcare workers for hard-pressed hospitals in West Dorset.
Dorset health bosses are looking for registered general and mental health nurses, as well as occupational therapists, physiotherapists and health care assistants, to help provide crucial local NHS services – both in hospitals and out in the community.
This is the second time this year Dorset HealthCare has put out calls for people to join Dorset hospitals, which also included a campaign in London at the beginning of the year to attract people to a range of vacancies in the trust.
But despite the campaign, Dorset HealthCare still needs more permanent staff to save money spent on agency staff.
A spokesperson for Dorset HealthCare said: “Like many NHS trusts around the country, Dorset HealthCare has not always found it easy to recruit to key posts in a number of areas, including nursing and allied health professionals such as occupational therapists and physiotherapists.
“The recent recruitment campaign – from January to March – and the forthcoming open days at Bridport and Westhaven hospitals are among the actions we are taking to help address this.
“The more permanent staff we can attract, the less money we need to spend on agency staff and the better consistency of care for our patients.
“The recruitment campaign did help to raise our profile – the number of job applications made directly through our website more than doubled compared to the same period in 2016 – but we still need more staff.”
Job seekers are invited to Bridport Hospital today, Wednesday, June 21st, and Westhaven Hospital in Weymouth on Wednesday, June 28th, to meet staff and learn about the roles.
Chiefs at Dorset HealthCare say experienced or newly qualified health workers are welcome to drop in anytime during the open days, which will run from 10am to 4pm.
There will be the chance to talk to staff about their work over a cup of tea or coffee, learn about staff benefits and career development opportunities, see a list of current vacancies and pick up information leaflets or application forms.
Visitors will also be able to find out more about the Trust Bank, which offers a range of temporary or part-time employment opportunities across the Trust.
Bridport Hospital was featured in two Sky News broadcasts earlier this year looking at recruitment in the NHS.
Ellen Holmes, Senior Sister on the Ryeberry and Langdon wards, said: “Bridport Hospital is a great place to work, with lots of opportunities for personal and career development. I have been here two-and-a-half years and have responsibility for the two elderly care wards. I love my job.
“Overall, I’ve been with Dorset HealthCare for 26 years and have worked in most of the county’s community hospitals. I am passionate about the quality of care we can offer to our local communities, and hope we can recruit some lovely staff to come and join us.”
Helen Persey, Locality Manager for Weymouth and Portland, said: “This is a very exciting time to join Dorset HealthCare, as we have great opportunities to provide even better patient care in the community. Come and join us at one of our open days to find out more.”
Bridport Hospital is on Hospital Lane, and Westhaven Hospital on Radipole Lane, Weymouth.