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Thursday 23 November 2017

Hire staff on short contracts - HSE boss

Majella O'Sullivan

Majella O'Sullivan

HEALTH Service Executive boss Tony O'Brien favours hiring doctors and nurses on short-term contracts instead of relying on costly agency staff.

Mr O'Brien said the option that was being "discussed" was aimed at putting in place something that would replace the health service's reliance on agency personnel in circumstances where it had been unable to recruit staff.

He was responding to a report in the Irish Independent that Health Minister Leo Varadkar wanted to offer temporary contracts to doctors and nurses in a bid to cut down on the cost of agency staff.

The HSE is prohibited from hiring staff due to a recruitment embargo in the public sector.

Mr O'Brien said: "The option that's being discussed is putting in place something that would be instead of our reliance on agency personnel in circumstances where we've been unable to recruit a permanent member of staff.

"Partly that's a financial concern but it's also a concern about an availability of service, consistency of service and in that sense the overall quality of service."

He said having "longer-term" consistency of staff would be advantageous to the HSE.

Irish Independent

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