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Written Statement - This is Wales: Train Work Live Campaign – Launch of Phase Two - Nursing

Vaughan Gething, Cabinet Secretary for Health, Well-being and Sport
Today I am launching the second phase of our national and international marketing campaign which forms part of our actions to deliver on our commitment to “take action to attract and train more GPs, nurses and other health professionals across Wales”.

This phase will specifically focus on nurses in primary care, secondary care and the care home sector, promoting the benefits of training, working and living in Wales.

The campaign will target newly qualified and experienced registered nurses, as well as those who may be considering returning to the profession.  

We know that the number of nurses and midwives working in NHS Wales continues to increase year on year.  This is very encouraging.  However we are not complacent and recognise there are very real challenges around the recruitment of nurses across primary, secondary and care home care settings.

This is why we have been working with our partners to develop plans to address these challenges and develop the next phase of the marketing campaign to put Wales on the international map.

The campaign will promote the value we place on our nurses and the contribution they make to people’s health and our NHS.

We are committed to providing nurses with lifelong learning opportunities, from learning on the job in a highly supportive environment as a newly qualified nurse to support for experienced nurses with their career progression through work based learning, advanced practice programmes and research opportunities. This is further enhanced by the availability of a range of flexible working arrangements designed to help achieve a work life balance.

As well as seeking to recruit qualified nurses, we have, and will continue to invest in the training and development of nurses, midwives and other health professionals.  

On 9 December 2016, I announced a set of interim arrangements for the NHS Wales Bursary Scheme. At that time, I made it clear that Wales is open for business and that we welcome all individuals who are interested in undertaking their education and training programmes in Wales.

I have agreed to extend the arrangements put in place for 2017/18 to cover students who elect to study an eligible health programme commencing in 2018/19. The extension will enable more detailed work to be taken forward to further consider the longer term arrangements in light of the outcomes of the Diamond Review, including a full consultation process, to ensure we have a new set of arrangements in place for 2019/20 and that these amendments are sustainable.

As well as the marketing campaign, we will be supporting people interested in a nursing career in Wales through a single telephone point of contact for all enquiries and online via the www.trainworklive.wales website.    

This phase of the campaign will include attendance at healthcare events, a suite of case studies to highlight positive nurse stories along with a promotional film and highly targeted digital advertising which has proved so successful in the first phase of the campaign which targeted GPs.

Following the launch event at Keir Hardie Health Park in Merthyr Tydfil, NHS Wales will be exhibiting at the Royal College of Nursing Congress in Liverpool next week where we will be promoting the training opportunities, career pathways and lifestyle choices available to those who choose Wales to pursue their nursing career.

The national and international campaign is a long term endeavour and will continue to complement work already being undertaken by health boards to recruit staff.