Hillingdon Hospital seeks 50 Portuguese nurses

Already featured by The Sunday Times as “more caring” than their UK counterparts, Portuguese nurses are once again being actively recruited by a British hospital.

This time it is the Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in London.

According to online news portal Boas Notícias, 50 full-time nurses are being sought for a number of specialities including surgery, pediatrics, A&E and rehabilitation.

Recruitment agents CPL Healthcare cite salaries of between €28,300 and €36,700 (depending on experience), overtime and shift work bonuses, a “free month” of rent and free flight – conditions that far outstrip anything the nurses could achieve in Portugal.

One requirement is underlined, however. Applicants must speak good English. This follows news in the British press recently, highlighting the fact that many Portuguese nurses arriving for top jobs in Britain “couldn’t even speak the language”.

As the Daily Mail pointed out, critics were concerned that nurses’ low-level language skills “could put patients at risk” particularly as many of the nurses were “unable to understand medical instructions in English or even the words for numbers so that they could make-up correct drug doses”.

Thus CPL’s proviso is that applicants – either experienced nurses or university graduates – should have B2 or above grade English (as per EU CEFR guidelines) and should be registered, or in the process of registering, with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

Interviews will take place towards the end of February.

For more information, applicants should send CVs in English to Liliana Oliveira, at [email protected]

* CEFR – Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.