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Ipswich: Hospital chief executive vows to employ more than 200 trainee nurses and healthcare assistants

Ipswich Hospital chief executive Nick Hulme

Ipswich Hospital chief executive Nick Hulme

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Hospital bosses have pledged to guarantee a job for every trainee nurse and healthcare assistant.

In a landmark first for Ipswich Hospital, chief executive Nick Hulme has vowed to employ more than 200 nurses and healthcare assistants currently in training roles, providing they pass their qualifications.

He said: “We have trained these student nurses and healthcare assistants and it seems absolutely the right thing to do to guarantee them a job when they pass their professional exams and show that they believe in our values.

“The three things I want this hospital to be renowned for are to be a place you would recommend for care, you would recommend to work at and a place you would recommend to train or learn.

“If people have chosen to train and learn here we should recognise this.

“I stopped to talk to a group of student nurses in the hospital earlier this week and they were anxious about jobs.

“It started me thinking that we should guarantee all of our nurses and healthcare assistants in training a role with us when they qualify.”
Mr Hulme has promised that if nurses and healthcare assistants are not placed in the ward of their choice, they will be transferred there as soon as a vacancy arises.

He added: “Where there are roles which have many applicants, we will guarantee nurses in training a priority interview.

“We have a great partnership with the School of Nursing at University Campus Suffolk and I wanted to deepen and extend this.

“Our values, or promises to patients and colleagues, set out what anyone in the hospital can expect including a cheerful, friendly welcome, kind people who care about you, to be fully involved, to feel reassured and safe and that we deliver an organised and efficient service in skilled teams which are always improving.”

The Heath Road hospital has increased the numbers of nursing and healthcare assistants in recent months following a review of the numbers of staff and the dependency of patients on each ward.

It will also help limit the cost of agency staff while ensuring patients are satisfied with their quality of care.

Dr Lynne Wigens, director of nursing and quality, said: “We have had much success in recruiting newly qualified staff to work in the hospital, our research shows that the support we put in place such as ‘buddies’ or mentors really help new nurses and healthcare assistants as they take up their first roles.

“I am really pleased that we are able to make this commitment of a guaranteed job to nurses and healthcare assistants in training. Some of our most senior nurses in the hospital began their careers as health care assistants and were encouraged to do their nurse training and progress. Every year we encourage all staff to think about their own progression and how we can support that”.

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