Eighty nurses register to attend HSE three-day recruitment fair in Dublin
Event targeting nurses home for Christmas or going back to work after some time away
Rosarii Mannion, HSE national director of human resources: “A lot of the negative messages that have gone out have inhibited relocation but we want to change that narrative.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill
Eighty nurses have so far registered to attend a three-day recruitment fair taking place over the holiday period at the Health Service Executive headquarters in Dublin.
Yesterday, the first day of the event, 36 nurses had turned up at Dr Steevens’s Hospital to express an interest in working in the public health service. Some 28 were interviewed and 19 were successful and will be offered posts. However the HSE said this was only the first of a series of career events it planned to hold over the coming months.
Minister for Health Simon Harris, who plans to visit the jobs fair today, said: “One of the things I want to do is significantly overhaul the recruitment process for nurses.
“It is going to be a priority for 2017. Recruitment is a challenge in terms of nurses. There is global competition for nurses and therefore Ireland needs to make sure that nurses applying for jobs in a hospital here that the process is as straightforward as possible.” Mr Harris said one of the issues for nurses had been a lack of information and assistance when applying for positions in the health services.
One of the possibilities being examined is establishing a new information helpline to assist them with the process. The Minister refused to be drawn on new or enhanced payments to nurses, claiming this was a matter for Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Paschal Donohoe. Many of those attending yesterday were interviewed on the spot while others with a more tentative interest were provided with information on a range of jobs.
The event is predominantly targeting Irish nurses who are home from overseas for Christmas and who are thinking of coming back here to work. Others who turned up were thinking of returning to the workforce after time away from work or were considering switching from the nursing home sector to hospital-based work.
As well as permanent jobs, she highlighted the “very good” pension scheme, an abundance of education and training opportunities and flexible working hours as the positive factors of working for the HSE.
Nurses returning from abroad may also qualify for a €1,500 relocation allowance.
Susan Leahy, a midwife from Limerick who left for Britain after qualifying in 2009, said she was attending because “it is time to come home”. “At the time, there weren’t a lot of positions available, so I went for the experience.”