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Horizon Says Progress Being Made In Recruitment

By Allan Dearing Aug 18, 2022 | 3:52 PM

Image courtesy New Brunswick Nurses Union

Many smaller and rural hospitals in the Horizon Health Network have struggled with staff shortages this summer which has forced periodic closures of emergency rooms.

But Horizon says it is making progress in its recruitment efforts with nearly 1,300 health care workers hired in the last five months.

The Sackville Memorial Hospital is just one smaller facility which has faced numerous ER closures recently due to a lack of staff.

Horizon interim president and CEO Margaret Melanson says the organization has partnered with the community of Sackville which is seeing good results.

“It has been very, very successful. Just over the last several months. I believe they’ve recruited at least five nursing positions and they continue their work now with physician recruitment and with ongoing other recruitment.”

Horizon human resources vice-president Gail Lebel says using non-traditional means of recruiting has proved more successful.

“If you’ve ever heard the term ‘post and pray’, I think that was the more traditional way of recruitment and recruitment has evolved into more of a marketing and sales approach. There’s a huge use of social media.”

Since April 1, the health authority has recruited and onboarded 240 registered nurses, 163 licensed practical nurses, 288 personal care attendants and hundreds of allied health professionals and support service workers.

Horizon has set a target of hiring more than 708 registered nurses during the current fiscal year and it had achieved 34 percent of that objective as of the end of July.

The health network also says more than 250 students have provided valuable support this summer.


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