Bosses at Northampton General Hospital are poised to recruit nurses from the UK, the Philippines and India in an attempt to improve care on its wards.
NGH has a number of local schemes, such as partnerships with the University of Northampton to recruit 40 new UK nurses, mainly to replace those retiring or moving on.
But it is also paying an agency that is in the process of interviewing in Asia and has been tasked with finding 100 overseas nurses, including 60 Indian and Filipino nurses.
They will be used to drastically reduce NGH’s costly reliance on agency and bank nurses. but Rachel Corser, interim director of nursing, said the real motivation behind the jobs push is to improve care.
She said: “This recruitment campaign is a ‘big bang’ approach to make an impact and it is all driven by the quality of patient care.
“Yes, we will save money but it’s really about replacing temporary staff with people who want to be permanent members of the team and buy into giving the best possible care.”
The new overseas recruits will be supported by a role created last month whose job it will be to help the new additions fit into life in the UK.
Mrs Corser said the lack of nurses being trained acrosss the UK has made a search abroad a necessity, and admitted the hospital would rather employ local staff nurses if they were available.
After a male nurse from the Philippines was last month convicted of poisoning and killing two patients in Stockport, there was concern in the UK media about widespread fake documentation used to secure jobs in this country.
But NGH said the agency is expert at making the required checks and uses qualified nurses to help vet foreign candidates.
It also assured patients that a minimum standard of English must be attained before they are offered job.
It is understood that the 100 new nurses will be ready to work unsupervised on NGH wards by the end of 2015.