Rethinking Remote: A Community Perspective

Our MiW Scottish Group member Ann Mason and NHS Orkney colleague Dr Charles Siderfin presented their work through poster and presentation at the recent Rethinking Remote conference in Inverness. The presentation A Community Perspective: The challenges of recruiting health professionals to remote areas and the role a community can play in supporting recruitment.“ was very well received and focussed on the ongoing work of the Isles Network of Care to support improved recruitment and community involvement within the recruitment process that Orkney have been taking forward.

In 2010 the Isles Network of Care (INOC) was established to help address issues of recruitment in Orkney. The communities were involved in the recruitment campaign and islanders engaged in recruitment activities such as promotional materials for application packs, hosting candidates on their islands; offering information on tourism, island services, the island economy and history. Community Councils and Development Trusts promote the islands as part of their recruitment responsibilities

Since 2015 all GPs and Nurse Practitioner positions within the Orkney Isles Network of Care have been fully recruited. Islanders have demonstrated an understanding of the complexity of recruitment and retention. There is a clear collective commitment to working with the Primary Care Team to support recruitment and retention activities.

Community members recognise the importance of ensuring candidates and their families feel welcome and supported by the community. They highlight both positives and drawbacks of island life to potential candidates. They have an understanding of the challenges in finding the right calibre of staff and ensuring they are supported in maintaining and improving their skills.

Find out more about this programme of work here: Poster PDF