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Health boards snub jobs fair despite recruitment crisis

24 Jan 2018

Miles Choice Landscape

A major jobs fair for health workers in Scotland’s capital city has been snubbed by every one of the country’s 14 regional NHS boards.

The summit will take place in March and is described by organisation Health Sector Jobs as the largest one of its type in the country.

Despite that, only NHS 24 has agreed to attend, despite the staffing crisis hitting health boards across the country.

Organisers have now written to health secretary Shona Robison asking her to explain the widespread rejection.

In their letter, they state the lack of involvement “sends a clear message that Scotland is not interested in either recruiting or retaining healthcare professionals”.

The letter adds: “This year, as with the two previous years, healthcare professionals including hundreds of nurses, midwives and doctors working in Scotland’s strained health system will again ask us why there are no regional health boards in attendance.

“We will again listen to their criticism of your government as well as how recruiting and retaining nurses and doctors is simply not a priority for the majority of Scottish health boards.”

Last year, both nursing and consultancy vacancies reached record levels in Scotland’s NHS.

Scottish Conservative shadow health secretary Miles Briggs said:

“It’s incredible, especially given the staffing crisis in Scotland’s NHS, that the SNP government isn’t taking this event seriously.

“If ministers really want to address the recruitment issue, the least they could do is ensure delegations are at this event from across the country.

“From failing to train enough nurses to ignoring demographic changes over many years, the SNP has been utterly negligent when it comes to stewardship of the NHS.

“And by failing to engage with events like this, patients and NHS staff will continue to suffer thanks to this nationalist government.”