Hospitals need to fill 53 jobs
THE Northern New South Wales Local Health District has downplayed concerns over the number of vacant positions across the region’s hospitals.
NNSWLHD chief executive Wayne Jones said while Shadow Health Minister Walt Secord had slammed them over the “unfair” number of vacancies, the 53 positions represented just 1% of the region’s 6000-strong workforce.
“This is not unusual, as vacancy numbers fluctuate throughout the year,” Mr Jones said.
“Staff vacancies are constantly changing as we recruit additional staff identified in forward planning for peak seasons and to support new or expanding services.
“NNSWLHD actively recruits to vacant positions and refutes the claim that positions are left vacant in order to meet budget constraints. The position of visiting medical officer – sexual assault forensic has recently been filled and the new staff member will begin work in November.”
Mr Secord said the vacancies included registered nurses, stroke occupational therapists, speech pathologists, enrolled nurses, unit managers, a pharmacist and maintenance officer along with emergency doctor, rehabilitation doctor, mental health nurse and more.
“It is unfair to patients and their families but it is also unfair to hard-working health and hospital staff in hospitals like the Tweed ... and Murwillumbah,” Mr Secord said.
He said the number of vacancies was “totally unacceptable”.
The NNSWLHD did not respond to questions relating to the specific number and type of current job vacancies at Tweed and Murwillumbah Hospitals.
SHORT-STAFFED: The Northern NSW Local Health District currently has 53 vacancies across the region.