NORTHERN PERIPHERIES PROJECT (NPP) RECRUIT AND RETAIN:
RECRUITMENT AND RETENTION OF HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS AND PUBLIC SECTOR WORKERS IN REMOTE RURAL AREAS
Recruit and Retain is a strategic project part funded by the Northern Periphery Programme which aims to find solutions to the persistent problem of difficulties in recruiting and retaining high quality front line health care providers for the remote rural areas of Northern Europe.
The problem of a lack of available qualified public service professionals working in remote rural areas is an ongoing concern in all regions included in the NPP area. Transnational cooperation to find solutions to this common problem will determine the shape of the public service available to the people living away from urban areas. All people, from the very young to the very old, will be affected; public service provision could prove a factor in determining whether an individual lives in one of the more isolated and sparsely populated regions of the area covered by the NPP.
The project aims derive from increasing concerns that recruitment and retention of high quality health care personnel to remote rural areas is becoming more difficult and more expensive. As these concerns increase the confidence that remote rural area inhabitants have that their health care needs will be met is undermined; putting the very survival... More...
Priority: Promoting innovation and competitiveness in remote and peripheral areas
Objective: Innovation, networks and competitiveness
Theme: Human resources, education, employment, capacity building
Recruit and Retain sets out to find solutions to the persistent problem of difficulties in recruiting and retaining high quality people to work in the public sector in the remote rural areas of Northern Europe. The core project will address issues and solutions with respect to health care workers. The Recruit and Retain Strategic Management Group will identify areas within the core project work which are applicable to other public service workers. This will relate to those people working in education, the social services, the fire and emergency services and local government civil servants and will constitute the additional work of the Strategic project.
The work will be connected to the work at urban centres. The collaboration between practices in rural areas and urban centres will develop products and services which will increase the possibilities to recruit relevant qualified workforce and improve the quality of work and the diversification of work in practices in rural areas.
Within its core service package innovative approaches to
professional development and skills maintenance
combating professional isolation
securing social and family stability
will be developed advanced and tested. This will allow a novel long term service provision plan for all public sector workers to be developed in the form of a business model capable of being adapted to differing regional contexts at both a regional and national level.
By working together to produce a series of transboundary products and services which address the reasons why people are reluctant to consider health care employment in remote rural areas and which meet the needs of those already in post, recruitment and retention packages will be designed and tested.
A Strategic Plan
to the project will bring together remote and rural expertise to design and deliver the education and professional support solutions required to improve recruitment and retention of health and public sector staff in remote areas and to develop transferable education solutions from the outcomes of the project. The partners are also responsible for developing a strategic plan for the overall project outcomes and developing transferable products for public sector.
Highland project team
The Centre for Rural Health, NES RRHEAL and NES Dentistry form the Highland partnership for this project. By working together to submit a joint bid the Highland team were able to use combined expertise to attract €210,000 funding from the EU through the NPP programme.. The outputs from this programme of work will be designed and delivered jointly and will require each partner to use their particular area of educational and research expertise to fully deliver on the work package, strategic objectives and strategic plan.
The project started on 1 June 2011 and will run for the next two and a half years ending 30 June 2014 and it has a total budget of almost three million euros. NES RRHEAL, NES Dentistry and CRH will work alongside partners from Iceland, Greenland, Norway, Sweden, Canada and Ireland to identify the social and professional factors that contribute to difficulties for remote and rural recruitment and retention of healthcare staff across many geographies. This will involve a large scale survey of 1000 remote and rural relevant people in each of the participating countries providing a rich source of data upon which to build and share solutions.
NHS Western Isles, Scotland - Lead Partner
Centre for Rural Health CRH (University of Aberdeen), Scotland. Associate partners: NHS Education for Scotland NES (Remote and Rural Healthcare Education Alliance RRHEAL and Dentistry), Scotland and Highland Council
The Agency of Health and Protection, Greenland
FSA University Hospital, Iceland
Helse Finnmark Health Trust, Norway
County Council of Västerbotten, Emergency & Disaster Medical Centre + Storuman Health Care Centre, Sweden
Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Canada
Cooperation and Working Together (CAWT), Northern Ireland
The project includes partners from areas which are known to have had difficulties in recruiting and retaining health care professionals in the past and who have undertaken work to try and resolve the problem. By bringing together people with similar issues from different geographical areas we will be able to share experiences and solutions with the expectation that new innovative initiatives.
The need for a transnational approach to solving recruitment and retention challenges was illustrated by presentations at the NPP Stornoway Conference in November 2011 from Jim Buchan, Queen Margaret’s University in Edinburgh and Roger Strasser, Northern Ontario School of Medicine. Professor Buchan, representing the World Health Organisation (WHO) Guideline Development Group, summarised the work of the recently completed WHO 2010 project on ‘Increasing Access to Health Workers in Remote and Rural Areas through Improved Retention’. He indicated how the WHO 2010 report recommendations will join together with the objectives and work packages of the Recruit and Retain project.
The project’s Strategic Management Group will identify areas within the core project work which are applicable to other public service workers. This will relate to those people working in education, the social services, the fire and emergency services and local government civil servants and will constitute the additional work of the strategic project. The Strategic Management Group includes CRH, NES, Highland Council and CAWT.
The Northern Periphery Programme
The Northern Periphery Programme 2007-2013 aims to help peripheral and remote communities on the northern margins of Europe to develop their economic, social and environmental potential. The success of the programme will be built on joint projects creating innovative products and services for the benefit of the programme partner countries and Europe as a whole. The diverse regions of the NPP area share common features such as harsh climate conditions, sparseness of population and remoteness. Transnational cooperation provides excellent opportunities for finding new ways to address shared challenges and explore new opportunities.
For more information contact
Pam Nicoll, Programme Director RRHEAL 01463 255910
our project video can be viewed at the following link: