HOSPITAL bosses have launched another major recruitment drive to fill 100 nursing positions which remain vacant.

Since being placed in special measures in July last year, the Royal Blackburn and Burnley General hospitals have brought in more than 180 new nurses and healthcare assistants, but they still need more.

The recruitment campaign, labelled ‘Care to Make a Difference’, encourages applicants from ‘across the globe’ to apply for a Band 5 position, due to a shortage of UK nurses.

Chief nurse Christine Pearson said: “Applicants may be newly qualified nurses, nurses who are looking to move to a new role or nurses who may have been out of the workplace for some time and are now looking to return.

“As we may not be able to fill all of our nursing vacancies by recruiting in the UK, we are also encouraging nurses from across the globe to take up positions within East Lancashire.

“We are looking for nurses not only with the right qualifications to work at our trust, but they also need to share our values and be dedicated to providing high quality and safe care for patients.”

Last summer NHS chief Sir Bruce Keogh published a report which made wide-ranging criticisms of the way East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust had been run, including major concerns about low staffing levels.

The trust has since increased its nursing workforce by 62, as well an additional 121 healthcare assistants.

But a spokesman for the trust added: “As a trust we are showing as having a circa 100 gap for nursing. This doesn’t mean we have unsafe levels but takes into account vacancies, turnover, sickness and escalation.”

There are 82 qualified nurses currently going through the recruitment process, but many of these positions will be cancelled out by current staff who are due to leave.

The trust employs more than 2,000 nurses in total.

For more details see: shireHospitals or https://twitter. com/EastLancsHosp