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PRUH latest hospital in UK to go abroad to fill nursing vacancies after forecasting undersupply
Princess Royal University Hospital has sent a recruitment team to the Philippines to fill new nursing positions.
The hospital, in Farnborough Common, is the latest to search overseas after forecasting an "undersupply" of British candidates.
After announcing plans to hire 250 nurses, PRUH said it is "always our priority to fill vacancies" from within the country's borders.
A spokeswoman explained: "This is the first time we have attempted to fill vacancies with nurses from the Philippines.
"We would hope to fill the majority locally – it is always our priority. But where there is an insufficient supply we have to look at other sources of recruits so that we can staff the wards with adequate numbers of nurses to maintain safety.
"We are running an extensive campaign for new graduates, with a particular focus on those who did their training at the PRUH."
The Nursing Times (NT) reported at least a third of hospital trusts in England have had to venture abroad as they struggle to staff wards.
It said a shortage in the NHS has led some to recruit dozens of nurses from across Europe and further afield, with teams warning of potential ward closures without such measures.
NT editor Jenni Middleton commented: "It is a problem. There is a shortage of UK nurses being trained and therefore many trusts all over the country are going abroad to fill roles."
A recent NHS survey, conducted by public service union Unison, found the service is under "severe strain" with too few nurses available to plug the gaps.
'Running on Empty' revealed 65 per cent of staff said that they did not have enough time with patients and 55 per cent reporting care was left undone as a result.
It was earlier this month PRUH revealed its "massive" recruitment drive, which comes as part of a £3.5 million investment from King’s College Hospital, heading the site up since October 2013.
PRUH's deputy director of nursing Paula Townsend said: "We are looking for talented and enthusiastic nurses who are committed to delivering high quality, compassionate care to our patients."
"We want to tap into the talent we have locally and show them that the PRUH is a great place to work."
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