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Health| Vacant medical consultant positions

To ask the Minister for Health the extent to which the number of consultant vacant positions are being filled as a matter of urgency in order to meet the challenges of the coming winter and the future in the health services; and if he will make a statement on the matter.


The Health Service Executive has been requested to reply directly to you in the context of the above Parliamentary Question, submitted by you to the Minister for Health. This matter has been referred to me for response on behalf of the HSE.

The Public Appointments Service (PAS) recruits approved permanent consultant posts on behalf of the HSE for some of the statutory hospitals and community settings. Many of the larger hospitals recruit directly.

The global race for talent in the area of Medical Consultants continues to be a challenge, particularly across all areas of Psychiatry, Geriatrics, Palliative Care, Radiology and Respiratory. To alleviate this, the HSE is investing heavily in improving the overall recruitment capacity and streamlining the candidate journey and is working in collaboration with the PAS to expand significantly our international reach through a robust marketing strategy anchored in a one stop shop microsite which will facilitate the marketing of consultant recruitment across the globe.

The HSE is also currently researching and developing individual resourcing strategies for specialties which are challenging to fill / scarce internationally. In recognition of the veracity of the global competition for health care talent, the HSE has developed and implemented a competitive relocation package to facilitate international recruitment. The HSE is also conducting significant work both nationally and locally, examining posts that are unable to fill and identifying clear pathways for same. The HSE is confident that the changes made to the recruitment process, together with the additional capacity being built within the PAS will result in a more responsive recruitment service to meet the needs of the services and an expanded candidate pool from which to fill urgent posts.
If you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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