Health­perm is mov­ing for­ward



The NHS is cur­rently fac­ing the big­gest chal­lenge in its 70-year his­tory with signs of the strain the sys­tem is un­der in ar­eas such as hos­pi­tal care, A&E and GP ser­vices. The rea­sons for the ser­vice reach­ing this cri­sis point are com­plex and multi-di­men­sional, but there are some clear con­trib­u­tory fac­tors:

• An age­ing pop­u­la­tion

• Life­style fac­tors

• The change in pub­lic ex­pec­ta­tions

• Ac­ci­dent and Emer­gency de­part­ments ca­pac­ity

• Ris­ing costs of ser­vices, en­ergy and sup­plies

• In­no­va­tions and tech­no­log­i­cal break­throughs that re­quire more in­vest­ment – along with higher num­bers of peo­ple to cater for

• Staffing is­sues

Staffing short­ages and the chal­lenges that brings the NHS were high­lighted re­cently in some de­tail by the Kings fund which states that the num­ber of nurses and health vis­i­tors em­ployed by the NHS has fallen for the first time on a year by year ba­sis since April 2013.

Direc­tor of pol­icy, Richard Mur­ray, high­lighted that there were fewer NHS nurses and health vis­i­tors in post in April this year com­pared to the pre­vi­ous April. The fall con­tin­ued in May and June, with 282,603 nurses and health vis­i­tors in post in June, 1,071 fewer than in June 2016.

The key fac­tors in the fall have been a sig­nif­i­cant re­duc­tion in the num­ber of nurses from the EU join­ing the UK nurs­ing reg­is­ter since the EU ref­er­en­dum and changes to lan­guage test­ing re­quire­ments. The num­ber of staff leav­ing the NHS as a re­sult of ill-health and work-life bal­ance has also in­creased sharply over the past few years. There are now 40,000 va­can­cies for nurses in the UK.

The fall in nurse num­bers raises ques­tions about the NHS’s con­tin­u­ing abil­ity to en­sure pa­tient safety.

Richard Mur­ray has said: ‘There is good ev­i­dence that hav­ing enough nurses is es­sen­tial for de­liv­er­ing safe care, and so it is wor­ry­ing that the num­ber of nurses and health vis­i­tors is go­ing down at a time when ser­vices are al­ready over­stretched and the de­mand for care is ris­ing.

‘Work­force plan­ning has been ne­glected for too long in the NHS, and the fact that the EU ref­er­en­dum re­sult ap­pears to have tipped the bal­ance high­lights how frag­ile the work­force sit­u­a­tion has be­come. A new work­force strat­egy is des­per­ately needed.’

NHS Eng­land have re­cently pub­lished and are con­sult­ing on a draft work­force strat­egy to ad­dress the short­falls high­lighted above but the im­me­di­ate and long term need is to cre­ate and en­sure a long term sup­ply of well trained Lan­guage qual­i­fied overseas nurses and other pro­fes­sional staff.


goal is to be­come the largest provider of per­ma­nent ex­pe­ri­enced nurses and other health­care pro­fes­sion­als, ini­tially from Philip­pines into the UK and the Gulf Co­op­er­a­tion Coun­cil (GCC) coun­tries.

The founders started this busi­ness in the knowl­edge the NHS is chron­i­cally short of nurses and will not be able to meet their full-time head­count re­quire­ments from the UK mar­ket alone for a num­ber of years, par­tic­u­larly given the cur­rent 40,000 va­can­cies for nurses.

Hospi­tals have to use locum-agen­cies to fill their short-term head­count needs – which is very ex­pen­sive for the NHS and doesn’t con­trib­ute to a stable work­force.

Health­perm also rec­og­nizes that in­ter­na­tional nurses as­pire to work in UK’s na­tional health ser­vice and that once they ar­rive nurses tend to stay in the NHS for the long term.

Health­perm es­sen­tially has two cus­tomers – the hos­pi­tal and the can­di­date. Both are equally im­por­tant to the Or­gan­i­sa­tion.

The busi­ness fo­cuses on both the NHS and the pri­vate health­care sec­tor in the UK and GCC.


The Health­perm busi­ness model has five steps: • Win man­dates from hospi­tals/em­ploy­ers.

• Find good can­di­dates from the Philip­pines and other in­ter­na­tional lo­ca­tions.

• Man­age the in­ter­view and de­ploy­ment process with or for the hos­pi­tal.

• Help the can­di­date and the hos­pi­tal with the on­board­ing pro­ce­dure and ad­min­is­tra­tion of com­ing to the UK or GCC.

• Help the can­di­dates set­tle into their new work en­vi­ron­ment.

• Health­perm sup­ports both em­ploy­ers and can­di­dates through this process in or­der to en­sure higher de­ploy­ment rates com­pared to com­peti­tor agen­cies.

The com­pany helps the hos­pi­tal re­cruit­ment teams by manag­ing the in­ter­view ses­sions with or for them as well as manag­ing the can­di­date’s ad­min­is­tra­tion from in­ter­view to ar­riv­ing in the hos­pi­tal for their first day of work.

Its can­di­dates have usu­ally never been to the UK be­fore and need help and ad­vice on com­ing here. The on-board­ing ad­min­is­tra­tion can take up to nine months from ini­tial in­ter­view so Health­perm work closely with the can­di­dates to help them through the ad­min.

When the can­di­dates ar­rive in the UK, the com­pany meets them at the air­port, helps ar­range their first month’s ac­com­mo­da­tion, works with NHS Trust on in­duc­tion and in­tro­duc­tion to the lo­cal com­mu­nity and also sup­plies the can­di­dates with a food par­cel for their first few days and pro­vides mo­bile SIM card. This ‘pas­toral care’ ap­proach re­flects Health­perms Val­ues in car­ing for clients and can­di­dates.

Af­ter ar­riv­ing in the UK nurses need to pass a test of com­pe­tency called OSCE. The na­tional pass rate is 58%. The pass rate for Health­perm de­ployed nurses is 100% and pro­vides a real dif­fer­en­tia­tor to other agen­cies. Health­perm be­lieves the post de­ploy­ment sup­port makes the dif­fer­ence.


Un­like many other re­cruit­ment agen­cies in the health­care space, Health­perm has its own re­cruit­ment sub­sidiaries in both the Philip­pines and also in Dubai. The teams in these of­fices re­cruit can­di­dates for roles in the UK and in the GCC.

When set­ting up the busi­ness the com­pany im­me­di­ately re­alised that to win trust and con­fi­dence from the can­di­dates, it had to have its own ded­i­cated re­cruit­ment peo­ple in-coun­try at­tract­ing and manag­ing the can­di­dates through the re­cruit­ment journey. Hav­ing the re­cruit­ment teams in the lo­cal coun­tries is a unique point-of-dif­fer­ence when work­ing with NHS hospi­tals on their re­cruit­ment pro­grams. This in­te­grated ap­proach pro­vides a wholly owned or­gan­i­sa­tion that cov­ers all the steps in the can­di­date journey with no need to sub­con­tract to third par­ties, un­like com­peti­tor agen­cies.


For the can­di­date to be granted an em­ploy­ment visa from their NHS Trust they need to first pass ei­ther the In­ter­na­tional English Lan­guage Test (IELT’s) or Oc­cu­pa­tional English Test (OET) in their lo­cal coun­try be­fore com­ing to the UK. The test is a re­quire­ment for the UK visa ap­pli­ca­tions and shows a can­di­date’s com­mit­ment to the re­cruit­ment process.

Health­perm re­alised in 2016 that can­di­dates with the IELTS qual­i­fi­ca­tion are se­ri­ous about com­ing to the UK and are un­likely to drop-out of the on-board­ing cy­cle. The Health­perm busi­ness model now only in­ter­views can­di­dates that have al­ready passed the IELTS / OET. This ap­proach pro­vides an­other dif­fer­en­tia­tor to other agen­cies.


With the im­por­tance of the IELTS qual­i­fi­ca­tion to its busi­ness model Health­perm opened its own ded­i­cated IELTS/OET train­ing cen­tre in UAE. ‘Health­perm Train­ing Cen­tre FZ-LLC’, fo­cuses on in­ter­na­tional nurses, in­clud­ing those from the Philip­pines, cur­rently work­ing in GCC states but who have an in­ten­tion to move to the United King­dom. Health­perm is the only nurse re­cruit­ment com­pany with this of­fer­ing in the United Arab Emi­rates. In ad­di­tion, Health­perm con­tin­u­ous to part­ner with IELTS cen­tres both in the Philip­pines and other coun­tries in the Mid­dle East to pro­vide a wider net­work to source can­di­dates.


Ear­lier this year Health­perm pub­lished a trad­ing up­date show­ing rev­enue of £250,000 in 2017. To date well over 2,200 in­ter­views have been con­ducted with more than 1,200 job of­fers been made. More than 350 can­di­dates have now taken up new posts in­clud­ing al­most 100 nurses in UK. The first grad­u­ates of the Health­perm own lan­guage school are now qual­i­fied and are in the de­ploy­ment process thereby prov­ing this el­e­ment of the busi­ness model.

The com­pany has moved to larger of­fices in the UK and Manila and ex­pects to open a new of­fice in Cebu in the Philip­pines thereby in­creas­ing its geo­graph­i­cal cov­er­age for can­di­date sourc­ing.

In April the or­gan­i­sa­tion achieved ISO9001 ac­cred­i­ta­tion and is now the only re­cruit­ment agency which is an as­so­ciate mem­ber of the NHS Em­ploy­ers Group.


Dur­ing May Health­perm com­menced re­cruit­ment for seven newly signed hospi­tals within the UK and this follows on from com­mence­ment of a pi­lot project for a large hospi­tals group in Saudi plus a new con­tract for a ma­jor hos­pi­tal in Kuwait. The in­ter­na­tional in­fra­struc­ture build is now com­plete with proof of con­cept es­tab­lished. The fo­cus is now on win­ning new man­dates and de­ploy­ing can­di­dates for the re­spec­tive em­ploy­ers.

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