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Colchester Hospital resorts to drafting in Army medics

Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Colchester General Hospital and Essex County Hospital, has more than 215 nursing vacancies at present and has had to take drastic action by calling in Army medics to help fill the vacancies. The Hospital has been in special measures since 2013 and has been plagued with bad press such as stories about staff being pressurised into changing cancer waiting times.

As recent as last month, the health watchdog, the CQC, has rated the Hospital as inadequate after it became clear that the staff shortages were affecting A&E and urgent care departments. The Trust has since introduced some new initiatives to address the staffing shortage, one of which was to use medical technicians to fill shifts whilst not on duty.

An NHS spokesperson said: ‘We have been talking to Colchester Garrison about the possibility of using their combat medical technicians as bank nurses.

‘The garrison has been supportive of this and has said that, as long as the individual medics’ commanding officer is happy for them to work here on the bank when they are off duty, it’s fine by them.’

Medics, who have assisted the Hospital, are also being targeted in the recruitment drive when they leave the Army.

A Colchester Garrison spokesman said: ‘There are long-standing arrangements in place for personnel from Colchester-based 16 Medical Regiment to carry out clinical placements at both Colchester General Hospital and Ipswich Hospital.

‘With the permission of their chain of command and provided it does not interfere with their military duties, soldiers are able to take on additional work in their spare time.’

If you feel you have has suffered due to Hospital staff shortages or a poorly run department then contact us at Thorneycroft Solicitors to see if you have a case for compensation.  People make mistakes and we accept that but when mistakes happen which cause uneccesary pain and suffering then we need to prevent them happening again.  Whether it was mis diagnosis, delayed diagnosis, or negligent medical treatment that led to your illness becoming extended or terminal, call us now to discuss your experience with an specialist medical negligence solicitor on 0800 1979 345 or complete our simple online enquiry form.