The province’s Office of Healthcare Professionals Recruitment has made three grants to Eastern Shore health nonprofits to work together, each with a different focus, to recruit and retain healthcare workers.
The Musquodoboit Valley Health Foundation will focus on recruiting local talent by hosting career days and job fairs in local schools, providing students with first-hand experience of working in healthcare. The foundation will also develop promotional materials and a training strategy to help local healthcare providers advance their skills and designations.
The Musquodoboit Harbour and Area Chamber of Commerce and Civic Affairs and the Old School Community Gathering Place will work on retention of healthcare professionals through activities that support health providers who currently commute to create bonds with and settle in the community.
The Sheet Harbour and Area Chamber of Commerce and Civic Affairs will focus on the recruitment of new healthcare professionals to Eastern Shore communities. Activities will include exhibiting at physician events and developing a welcome guide and a promotional campaign.
The funding is from the government's new Office of Healthcare Professionals Recruitment Community Fund. A total of 28 groups across Nova Scotia applied by the December 19 deadline, and more successful applicants will be notified in the coming weeks.
The fund, worth $2 million in total, is among the recruitment and retention initiatives outlined in Action for Health, the Province's plan to improve healthcare. Musquodoboit Valley Health Foundation will receive $18,400; the Musquodoboit Harbour and Area Chamber of Commerce and Civic Affairs and the Old School Community Gathering Place will receive $56,000; and the Sheet Harbour and Area Chamber of Commerce and Civic Affairs will receive $81,825.
In a press release, Old School Community Gathering Place co-chair Karen Bradley said, "The Old School Community Gathering Place and the Musquodoboit Harbour and Area Chamber of Commerce and Civic Affairs appreciate this opportunity to tackle one of our community's urgent needs - to find ways for our community to work together to keep our wonderful doctors and nurses on the Eastern Shore."
In the same release, Eastern Shore MLA Kent Smith, speaking on behalf of Minister Michelle Thompson, said, “The collaborative approach of these three Eastern Shore groups is what Nova Scotia is all about. By working together and dividing up the work, the Eastern Shore's united approach to healthcare recruitment and retention will show positive impacts in these communities."