A total of 64 foreign nurses have been taken on to work in hospitals in Sussex.
The new recruits from across Europe will arrive in Sussex over the next few weeks to work in St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester and Worthing Hospital.
The nurses, mostly from Spain, have accepted permanent offers to work for Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust on in-patient wards in the two hospitals.
Bosses at the trust say the new recruits are all highly experienced nurses who have been carefully assessed not just for their professional skills, but also for their ability to communicate.
- Coach passengers able to walk away from crash with crane on A27
- VIDEO: Madness of man who stops to have his picture taken sat on the edge of 500ft cliff
- Body found on beach not being treated as suspicious
- Two taken to hospital following crash on A27
- Air ambulance called as boy, 12, is knocked over
It is hoped the overseas recruitment drive will mean patients are given better care and cash will be saved on hiring agency staff.
Sandie Ellard, deputy director of nursing at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Over the last five years we have invested heavily and significantly increased the number of nurses and healthcare assistants on our wards.
“Our staffing numbers compare well with other hospitals, but we can still do more – our new colleagues will mean that we will have even more permanent staff, able to give patients the best possible care, and the trust will be able to spend less on temporary staff.
“Our last really big overseas recruitment drive was more than 10 years ago now, in the Philippines, and many of those people are still with us today, having developed their skills and progressed their careers.”
East Sussex Healthcare Trusts said it did not have plans to recruit overseas nurses.
Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, which looks after the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton, said it was also recruiting overseas staff.
A spokesman said: “We are actively seeking recruitment of nurses from Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy.”