Hull’s hospitals welcome hundreds of overseas nurses to the city

Communications TeamNews

Hundreds of international nurses are now settling in Hull after finding rewarding careers in East Yorkshire.

Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust began an international recruitment campaign almost five years ago to offer internationally educated nurses the chance to work in East Yorkshire.

Since then, 316 nurses, mainly from the Philippines but also from Nepal, have started working at Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital.

And once they arrive in Hull, they’re happy to stay. Our retention rate for overseas nurses is 97 per cent, meaning they’re enjoying working for the trust and living in East Yorkshire.

Karen Mechen, Practice Development Matron for Nursing Workforce and Education, leads the team of Clinical Nurse Educators who support the international recruits to meet UK nursing standards.

She said: “We began our international recruitment programme in August 2017 and, since then, we have recruited a total of 316 nurses. We’re preparing for the arrival of a further 20 in a few weeks.

“These nurses go on to work in every area of our hospitals, from oncology and theatres to critical care and elderly medicine. They are a fantastic asset and we’re really lucky to have them here to look after our patients.”

HUTH works with recruitment agency Resource Finder to review and approve applications to find the right staff to work in East Yorkshire’s hospitals.

Overseas nursing staff have to pass an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and a computer-based test to ensure their communication skills are of a very high standard before they fly to England in groups of around 20 at a time.

A highly experienced team of Clinical Nurse Educators assess the skills of the new recruits as part of an intensive three-week training course at HUTH’s dedicated training facility, Suite 22, at Castle Hill.

Using the suite’s mock ‘wards’, the overseas nurses are trained in assessing, planning, implementing and evaluating nursing care in line with UK standards. The international nurses are also trained in medicines management and a range of around 10 clinical skills from injections and delivery of IV fluids to resuscitation.

When their in-house training has been completed, the international nurses then sit the Objective Standard Clinical Examination (OSCE), designed by the Nursing and Midwifery Council to ensure all applicants meet practical nursing standards. All overseas nursing recruits must pass the OSCE within 12 weeks of arriving in the UK and then receive their nursing PIN numbers, entitling them to work as fully qualified nurses in the UK.