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A hospital is just a building without the people who work within it.

As we move away from years of crisis management mode (necessitated by the pandemic), a main area of focus has been staffing, and efforts to move towards a healthier, more sustainable workplace.

September saw our largest new hire orientation since pre-pandemic! The Human Resources and Medical Affairs teams have been working hard and, of the 312 new staff hired from April to October, 107 were nurses, 93 were other clinical staff, and 112 were in clinical support and administrative roles. We have also welcomed 12 new associate physicians and 44 locum physicians to our hospitals so far this year.

These recruitment successes have allowed Quinte Health to gradually eliminate the use of agency nursing. By late-October, there were 11 agency staff remaining, with plans to reduce to zero by the end of the year. “Our limited resources are better spent on efforts to retain and recognize our staff, recruit new members to the Quinte Health team, and pursue innovative solutions to our capacity and staffing challenges,” said Susan Rowe, Vice President of People and Communications. “Ramping down agency staffing means we can invest in our dedicated Quinte Health teams versus continuing to invest in external resources.

To maximize potential recruits, our Human Resources team is finding innovative ways to reach both international applicants and students.

“In September, we received more than 250 applications from internationally educated professionals, many of them nurses,” said Lyndsay Kerik, Recruitment and Retention Specialist. “We are actively working to bring 21 of those international applicants here—moving forward with those who have already gone through the process to obtain their Canadian license. The applicants are grateful that we are making the effort to bring them over and we’re building a solid relationship with them as they embark on their career at Quinte Health.”

To support these international recruits in their transition to Canada, Lyndsay and the HR team are connecting international new hires with Quinte Immigration Services and important community resources to help them secure housing, schooling for their children, and childcare upon their arrival.

International recruitment is also becoming more common on the physician side. This year, the Medical Affairs team has welcomed an internal medicine hospitalist from South Africa, a paediatrician from the UK, and the team hopes to soon welcome another internal medicine hospitalist from the UK.

The HR team is also making a concentrated effort to convert students who do placements at Quinte Health into staff members. A new Recruitment and Student Liaison role has been created to work with students to further their development and relationships with the broader team. The successful candidate for this new role, Curt Flewelling, will act as a student liaison, organize development programs and lunch and learns, and help students discover different opportunities across our hospitals.

“By ensuring students have a welcoming and productive learning experience at our hospitals, and by giving them a true taste of our Quinte Health culture, we are hoping they will join our team once they have finished their training,” said Bree Gaber, Director of Human Resources and Occupational Health and Safety. “It’s a competitive environment to recruit health care workers, so we want to do all that we can—this includes spending additional time at post-secondary school career fairs to let potential recruits know what Quinte Health is all about.”

To learn more about a career or educational opportunity at Quinte Health, visit the Careers section of our website.