Introduction The nursing workforce shortage in the UK is having a significant impact on voluntary sector children’s palliative care services and is leading to increased recruitment of nurses from overseas to fill this gap.
Aims A national lead organisation worked in partnership with a local voluntary children’s palliative care provider to produce a signpost guide providing factual information and recording the actual experiences of this provider organisation when bringing overseas nurses to the UK. This guide would be available to other providers in the sector and valuable as a worked case example for other organisations – along with presenting the policy context.
Methods We recorded an interview with the director of people and resources at the children’s hospice: exploring what preparation happened there for the nurses arriving, how it went once the nurses were here, and what the learning points were including any cost/time benefits.
We then added into the guide detailed factual information about immigration rules and policy – in the context of the current shortage of children’s nurses in children’s palliative care.
Results Providers in the children’s palliative care sector can now see the detail of a worked example of one provider recruiting from overseas in this colourful guide – as well as ensure they are up to date with the detail of immigration legislation and how it may affect their workforce planning.
Conclusion Recruitment challenges are already having an effect on the care delivered by voluntary children’s palliative care organisations – this has been measured over two consecutive years and shows the continued vacancy level is having an increasingly negative effect.
Some children’s hospices will now be considering recruitment from beyond the UK – or will be continuing this practice where they already do it. This guide offers a resource on the rules of employing nurses from overseas and highlights the current situation in the global migration of nurses.
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