At the end of 2017 a National Strategic Framework for Health and Social Care Workforce Planning was launched by the Department of Health which aims to support the recruitment and retention of the right mix of workers, including those of nurses, across the health and social care system to meet planned and projected service need.
An action plan for initial implementation is currently being progressed. Actions taken during the initial year of implementation (2018) include the following:
- Governance Structures have been established;
- A Head of Strategic Workforce Planning and Intelligence has been appointed in the HSE;
- Two workshops have been health between representatives of the health and education sectors, with the aim of establishing protocols for closer engagement between the sectors.
While the implementation of the framework is continuing, the existing method of nurse workforce planning for our health service on an annual basis remains in place. All recruitment, including that of nurses and midwives, must take place in the context of the funding resources allocated and the HSE National Service Plan 2019.