The Ministry for Health, Care and Justice has announced the recruitment of 43 new Nursing Assistants. The newly appointed nurses will be deployed across Gibraltar Health Authority (GHA) facilities; including, St Bernard’s Hospital and Ocean Views Mental Health Facility, as well as Elderly Residential Services (ERS) facilities.

Nursing Assistants provide basic patient care in hospitals, residential homes and other clinical settings, under the direction of more senior nurses. Nursing Assistants form an important part of the nursing workforce, attending to the personal care needs of patients or residents, who need assistance with basic routines such as meal times, bathing and dressing. A Nursing Assistant’s role, depending on the area in which they are working, may also include the monitoring of patients during their stays in the hospitals or residential homes, including checking and recording vital signs.

Ms Susan Vallejo, ERS Manager, spoke of her delight in welcoming the new recruits, stating that they will be joining a professional and dedicated nursing team, providing holistic nursing care and support to residents. She spoke of the important role that Nursing Assistants play in promoting the residents’ independence, social inclusion and wellbeing, in a dignified, respectful and compassionate manner. Ms Vallejo said: “I am looking forward to working with the new recruits. It is always a pleasure to embrace and build on the enthusiasm of new recruits and to guide and help them develop within our service.

Ms Sandie Gracia, the GHA’s Director for Nursing Services added that: “For all of us in the Gibraltar Health Authority, it is a time of great and significant changes, as on-going demand on our services continue to change both in terms of volume and shape, across health care. As the Director of Nursing, I am privileged to personally witness many recent examples of change innovations, which includes the expansion of an adaptable, contemporary, nursing workforce, in response to the health care needs of our community. We have a duty to use our resources wisely to ensure that nursing careers remain attractive and accessible to all.”

Clinical Nurse Manager for Mental Health Services, Ms Kay Rajkumar, commented that: “Mental health services are delighted to welcome the new additions to our staffing complement, as the service continues to grow over the coming months. The additional resources will most certainly enhance the service we currently provide to our patients, both as in-patients and the community. Our objective is to ensure patients receive high quality care packages at all times through their journey of recovery.”

Minister for Health, Care and Justice, the Honourable Neil F. Costa MP, met with the new intake, to personally welcome them to the GHA and ERS, stating: “I wish to wholeheartedly congratulate the newly appointed Nursing Assistants. It is truly gratifying to form part of a Government that is sincerely committed and dedicated to resourcing our health and care services for the good of our community.. These appointments mark an exciting time for the Gibraltar Health Authority and Elderly Residential Services. This new intake of nursing will play an integral part in the future of nursing services in Gibraltar. All our new entrants should feel privileged as they embark on a new and important chapter in their professional lives. Life is such that, most of us, at one stage or another will require nursing care. As a result, it is our duty, both at the GHA and ERS, to ensure that this care is delivered safely, with compassion, and at the highest of standards, always with our patient’s and resident’s comfort and wellbeing at heart. I am confident that, with our excellent teams of dedicated and caring professionals, we are in a solid position to deliver.