Nurses from India and the Philippines are expected to fill more than 300 empty posts at Leicester’s hospitals as administrators embark on a recruiting mission.
Hospital management expressed worries that Leicester is becoming less attractive option for nurses from Italy, Spain and Portugal following the Brexit vote which will formalize Britain’s departure from the European Union.
Around 500 nurse from mainland Europe have arrived in Leicester in the past three years, but some of them have decided to return home.
Julie Smith, chief nurse at Leicester’s hospitals, said: “About 20 nurses have gone back following Brexit.
“Quite a number were about to move their families over there but now feel this is more risky none.
“Those from Spain particularly want to go back. People are worried about their ability to return to their home nations,” Smith added.
“We are looking to India and the Philippines but this will not be a quick fix. It is going to be more difficult,” says Maria McAuley, assistant chief nurse at Leicester’s hospitals.
All nurses admitted will have to pass a new English language test and undergo a further two to three months clinical adaptation program.
“We have begun some Skype interviews but it will be April at the earliest before successful applicants will be with us and with the lead in time it will be at least six to seven months before we see an impact,” McAuley said.