Latest news and views

Bluestones Medical is an approved supplier through the HealthTrust Europe framework

Bluestones Medical is proud to be an awarded supplier through the HealthTrust Europe (HTE) “Total Workforce Solutions” framework.

Read more

Bluestones Medical awarded place on the All Wales Framework for Nursing Services

Bluestones Medical is delighted to announce that we have been awarded a place on the All Wales Framework for Nursing Services.

The contract award enables us to build on the relationships and support we have provided over the last 10 years to Welsh Health Boards and Trusts. This Framework goes live on the 1st March 2021 and will run to the 28th February 2024, with the option of a one year extension

All Wales Framework for Nursing Services

 

 

 

 

 

Through the All Wales Framework, our local Cardiff and Chester regional hubs are able to offer healthcare staff, including healthcare assistants, nurses and ODPs temporary employment opportunities through an approved framework. This means that all worker checks have been rigorously conducted and supplied at a compliant rate. As a result, this minimises the need for expensive off contract agencies.

Darren Logue, our managing director has commented: “Securing our place on the All Wales Framework again is a significant achievement that recognises our regional capability, specialist focus and long-term commitment to providing a best-in-class service to the Welsh Health Board and Trusts”.

If you are a Welsh Health Board or Trust and you would like support with any temporary worker requirements get in touch with your local Bluestones hub who will be able to support.

If you are a healthcare candidate who is interested in opportunities within Wales get in touch today and our specialist consultants will be happy to help.

Bluestones Medical awarded a place on the NHS Workforce Alliance Clinical & Healthcare Staffing Framework

Bluestones Medical is now an approved supplier for temporary Clinical & Healthcare staff to NHS England via the Workforce Alliance Framework. This award follows 10 years of Bluestones Medical supporting NHS Trusts & the public sector with their temporary staffing across Nursing, Allied Health and Healthcare Assistant positions.

Read more

Bluestones Medical nurses administer COVID19 vaccine

Wow; we all felt a genuine sense of pride today when we saw one of our nurses administering the COVID-19 vaccine on BBC News!

We’ve been assisting with staffing across St Helens & Whiston vaccination pods, which opened today… and one of our nurses was captured by the press administering the injection.

Keep up the great work!

Bluestones Medical Vaccination

Better than Black Friday

Black Friday is great… but FREE perkbox is even better!

With year-round deals, there’s something for everyone.

Read more

RCN COVID-19 Webinar

We want to ensure that all our workers – and in this instance, our broader healthcare network – are kept up to date with events and news that we think are important and could benefit you. So we think it’s important that we let people know about the RCN webinar that’s taking place today, at 3.30pm.

Read more

New headquarters

Bluestones Medical, one of the leading national healthcare staffing providers has completed its move into new headquarters on the outskirts of Chester.

Read more

Happy Halloween 2020

The Bluestones Medical team have enjoyed a socially distanced fancy dress Halloween day to mark the end of our spooky prize draw competition.

Read more

Halloween Prize Draw

This Halloween, don’t be scared… be a prize draw winner with Bluestones Medical’s Halloween Prize Draw!

Read more

World Mental Health Day

Tomorrow (10th October) is World Mental Health Day and this year, we’re helping to raise awareness for the very real challenge many are facing, particularly throughout this pandemic.

Read more

New team structure

With the introduction of our new work app, Sirenum (have you downloaded it yet?) we have also taken the opportunity to switch our internal teams around too.

Read more

How to find the best nursing blogs

Nursing and professional development is a lifelong process; and looking at the constant changes, new methods and clinical skills are imperative to keep up to date with current practices and profession regulations.

Read more

What does compassion mean to you?

Since the 1960s, the term compassion has been a key fundamental aspect in providing excellent nursing care, thanks to Florence Nightingale. Over the years, we have had many government reports published, highlighting the improvements which are needed.

Every bespoke nursing agency should be underpinned and built around compassionate care.

As a Clinical Manager, I feel it is imperative to ensure all our employees are committed and understand the term compassionate care. From the finance department to the consultants, everyone should play a part. Gaining an understanding of our clients and workers needs is a vital role in building healthy relationships. It is important to remember compassion does not just come from working on the front line, it is something that is embedded from the start and throughout the employment process.

Here at Bluestones, regardless of job role, we understand how compassionate care impacts on lives. Each member of the Bluestones Medical team has been asked to give one word or a short sentence on what compassion means to them, which you can see below.

Thank you to one of our Fulfilment Consultants for this statement that brings everything together.

Compassion is putting yourself in someone else’s shoes (empathy) and caring about how they feel

– Hannah Potter

What does compassion mean to you? Have your say on our Facebook page…

Genomics and nursing practice

Genomics is a term we hear mainly from Doctors or Specialists within the field. The study of an individuals genes is something which is imperative for the understanding and treatment of genetic conditions.

As a nurse, this is something we do not normally get involved with. A new article has been published by the Nursing Times, highlighting the importance of understanding genetics within nursing and how they want to embed this into standard Nursing practice.

We need to make sure every registered nurse and midwife feels comfortable understanding the basics of genomics

    – Janice Sigsworth

This process has already been put into practice in certain areas of nursing by specialists within the field, this has been filtered back to nursing staff showing some really good results. Regardless of the field of nursing you are in, genomics will play an imperative role.

I believe this a such a positive step for nurses across the board. Over the years nursing has altered immensely, giving nurses much more responsibly, education and clinical skills. Today within the profession, we are seeing nurses carrying out tasks historically only a Dr would be competent to do.

But what does everyone else think? Have your say on our Facebook page…

Bid to embed genomics into mainstream nursing practice

The article from Nursing Times states that for the NHS to realise its ambition of integrating genomics into routine care, it will need the backing of its largest workforce, nurses. You can read it in full HERE.

Can the record growth of nurses be sustained?

Everyone who is of has worked within the healthcare industry will be aware of how important and how much we rely on overseas nurses.

Read more

Are we supporting our nurses?

As an RGN, I am fully aware of the physical and mental impact the role can have. Nursing comes with a great sense responsibility and can impact the lives of others immensely. Shutting off after a twelve-hour shift is proven to be very difficult, which I am sure many would agree.

Read more

Agency working tips

What to think about before starting an agency shift

Joining any agency can be difficult, especially when it is for the first time. With any agency you join, it is important to seek out the support you are offered beforehand, this support is something that you should expect from the moment you decide to join and every day throughout your time working. Agency work can be lonely at times, but having that support will make all the difference. Asking friends and colleagues what their experiences have been like, and what support they should expect can be beneficial. Sit back and think what the reasons are and where do you want the agency to take you?

Agency work can be an amazing experience once you have found the right team to look after you. It can give you that work-life balance, which we all know working within the health care setting, can be impossible at times. Different experiences will widen and build your clinical skill set dramatically, along with building your personal development. Anyone who has worked for an agency will be aware that sometimes it can be daunting especially at first, new faces, environments and in my case even driving to a new hospital was quite worrying at first.

The following information will guide you on how to prepare and feel confident when carrying out your first shifts.

Be prepared

When arriving at your allocated placement, ensure you have all of the relevant equipment. Such as pens, ID badge, correct uniform and your NMC pin number.

We all know the first impression can make a big impact, and being prepared will make you stand out from others. Doing this the day before your shift will help with any unexpected stresses you may face on the day.

Arrive early and be aware of where you are going beforehand. This is one thing I learnt early on in my agency career; I am happy to say my Nursing skills are far better than my directional skills and my ability to follow a sat-nav system. Arriving early will enable you to have a look around, gauging your surroundings, and the atmosphere can set you up for the rest of your shift. Showing your dedication by doing this will also make you stand out and be remembered.

 Never be afraid to ask questions

Being an agency nurse for the first time, regardless of how well trained you are or experienced, does not mean you are expected to know everything. Nursing and Healthcare is a daily learning process for everyone involved. When arriving at your allocated placement, ensure you are given an induction. If this is not offered or expected information is not given, then ask. Explain this is your first time in the trust or placement.

From previous experience, this is the required information I should be expected to be told:

  • Fire procedure, exits and meeting points
  • Emergency procedures, crash trolley, oxygen and emergency bells
  • Where policies and procedures are located
  • How notes are documented paper/online system
  • Who is in charge and who to speak to for support?
  • A short walk around the area who will be working in
  • Restrooms and of course the coffee machine

Once you are happy with the induction process and you feel that you have all the information needed to carry your shift safely, this is when you can exchange handover. Regardless of where an individual has previously worked a handover should be very similar. This will allow you to determine how many patients are in your care, their health condition, and any other needs they may have.

Communication

We all know communication is an integral part of any health care professional role, communicating with our patients is something i am sure we all do to be best of our ability. However, do we do with our co-workers to a similar degree? I can honestly say previously attempting to start a friendly conversation with a new colleague was something I found difficult in a new area; however, the initial difference it makes at the start of a shift outweigh that 30 seconds of anxiety. Try to remember names and interact with the team you are working with, we all try our best with our patients, so it is just as important to do it with our co-workers.

Reflect

After your shift has finished always reflect on what happened, what went well and what did not go so well – this will put you in good stead for the future. If your first shift did not go well, do not be too hard on yourself. Agency work can be an entirely new world for some, especially those who have worked within the same employer for many years. Feedback to your agency, if they have clinical staff ask for advice, there is a good chance they will be able to offer help or support. The main thing to remember that although agency work can seem lonely at times, a good and supportive agency will be there 24/7 to ensure you are not alone.

What is reflection?

Reflective practice was introduced way back in the early 20th century by the famous John Dewey. Following on from this – the theory of reflection has continued to grow and had developed immensely. The process itself allows an individual to continuously improve with professional practice and personal development. This is done by allowing yourself to be able to make sense of an experience.

Read more

International Nurses Day 2020

12th May is International Nurses Day and perhaps now, more than ever, we can reflect on the essential work, unfailing commitment and superhuman efforts our nurses demonstrate every day.

Read more

International Nurses Day in Kelly’s Corner

Not only is it the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife this year – but also today we mark the 200th year of the birth of Florence Nightingale. As we all know this day is to celebrate the amazing work nurses are doing daily around the world. In addition to this I think it is important that we acknowledge that this year is not your average year!

Read more

An intro to Kelly’s Corner

As a registered nurse myself working on the front line – I wanted to firstly thank you all for the amazing compassion and professionalism you have shown throughout these times of uncertainly.

Read more

Bluestones Medical appoints new MD

This week marks an important milestone for the Bluestones Medical business as Darren Logue joins as its new Managing Director. Darren joins Bluestones Medical from Randstad, where he’s spent the last 9 years establishing a high-performing, multi-million pound nursing and healthcare division.

On joining Bluestones Medical, Darren said:

As a well-established business with an excellent reputation in the market, strong framework presence and a national footprint – it wasn’t a difficult choice to take on this new role. I’m looking forward to getting to know the team and helping the business continue to evolve in to the market-leading force I know it can be.

Bluestones Medical is an elite brand within the Bluestones Investment Group’s portfolio of recruitment companies. The Group’s Divisional CEO, Trish Stratford commented:

This appointment is a clear indication of our intention to both support and grow our medical recruitment business. With Darren’s guidance we will continue to be customer-focused, expand into new geographies and develop new business streams.

His background and professional experience speaks for itself, but importantly for me, it’s also well-balanced with his personability and can-do attitude – and I’m excited to see where we can take the business.

Darren continued,

Clearly we’re living through challenging times with the COVID-19 outbreak affecting all areas of our lives. The NHS and other healthcare providers are facing exceptional challenges and are demonstrating their inherent value every day through the work they do.

Bluestones Medical is here too, actively working to support the national healthcare effort and although I’m taking on this new role now, I’m already encouraged by the passion our teams are demonstrating and the essential work they’re undertaking.

Bluestones Medical operates from two regional hubs and is a framework provider to the NHS in England and Wales. The business specialises in finding roles for nurses, theatre staff and healthcare professionals across both the public and private sector.

For more information about the company, please browse our website or contact us.

Importance of key workers

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, as of 25th March 2020, the UK government has produced a list of key workers that it deems are critical to the COVID-19 response.

Read more

Government guidance and COVID-19

It’s important that everyone plays their part in tackling the COVID-19 outbreak, whether that’s on the front-line as a healthcare provider or by self-isolating and social distancing.

Read more

Business continuity

Recruitment never stops, even in these challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly where medical and healthcare provision is concerned.

Read more

Best practice hygiene advice

We wanted to share our best practice hygiene advice in relation to COVID-19.

Please follow the below and do this for EVERY shift:

  • Get changed at work and again before you leave work – please do not arrive in your uniform prior to your shift or leave after your shift in uniform. This will decrease the risk of contamination.
  • Wear a clean uniform for EVERY shift – if you require an extra uniform please let the office know
  • Boil wash your uniform
  • Sanitise your hands when starting your shift and periodically throughout
  • Inform us of any changes to your health – please let us know if you decide to self-isolate and the reason why or if you are diagnosed with COVID-19. This is essential for us to know so we can take any actions needed.

External resources and information about COVID-19

There are some excellent sources of information from gov.uk and NHS websites. We’e shared a handful of links below, that reference the latest guidance:

Coronavirus update

As you’re no doubt aware, Coronavirus (or COVID-19 to give it its proper name) is now present in the UK. As a healthcare professional it’s important that you understand what this means for you and your role, so this guide brings together some helpful government and NHS information.

Read more

Open Day in St Asaph

Join us on the 4th March 2020 for a recruitment day at The Plough, The Roe, Saint Asaph, LL17 0LU.

Read more

New training dates added

We’re pleased to announce a series of new training dates have been added to our training calendar, right up to the end of February 2020.

Read more

The final countdown

It’s the final countdown… well, the final day of our Christmas Coundown anyway!

Read more

Countdown to Christmas continues

Our Christmas Countdown continues… with just 5 days of prize draws over the 5 remaining days till the big day!

Read more

Christmas opening times

Want to know when the Bluestones Medical offices will be open over Christmas? Then check out our Christmas Opening Times information here.

Read more

Interview tips

Interviews can be a daunting experience for anyone. Going into a new environment and getting judged on your experience, knowledge and attitude in a short period of time can be tough to prepare for. You never truly know what you’ll be faced with and you can rarely be too prepared. But with our quickfire interview tips you’ll be better equipped to ace that next interview.

Read more

Countdown to Christmas continues

To help everyone get into the festive mood, we’re celebrating with our ‘Countdown to Christmas’ prize draw.

Read more

Big Sleep Out, completed

Well it wasn’t easy, it was cold & wet but we did it and thanks to additional donations overnight we have now smashed our funding target!

Read more

Countdown to Christmas

To help everyone get into the festive mood, we’re celebrating with our ‘Countdown to Christmas’ prize draw.

Read more

Supporting Alzheimer’s Society and Elf Day

Across Bluestones Medical the team have really got into the Christmas spirit today, dressing up as elves to support Elf Day and the Alzheimer’s Society.

Read more

10 ways to guarantee more agency shifts

No matter where in the world you practise, agency nursing can be hard work. When it comes to agencies a lot of nurses join alongside their current role to earn a little extra money for a rainy day. But what about when you want to take on agency nursing full time? The flexibility to work when you want and freedom to have time off whenever you feel like it, sounds perfect doesn’t it? So why aren’t nursing doing it? Well, with set contract of actually getting work nurses often feel a lack of security. But, for the last 8 years, Bluestones Medical has been working with many full-time agency nurses!

Read more

Bluestones Big Sleep Out

The Bluestones Medical team will be sleeping out under the stars in Chester in order to raise money for a very worthwhile cause this Christmas.

Read more

Christmas payroll deadlines

We know it’s a little early, however, we wanted to share our Christmas payroll deadlines so you can plan around the holidays!

Read more

Flu vaccinations for health professionals

As many of us are aware flu season is fast approaching. Seasonal influenza is unpredictable but still a huge recurring pressure within healthcare settings (Public Health England, 2019).

Read more

Welcome to Ginnie

Welcome to Ginnie Garnett, the new hire at Bluestones Medical. Joining the Chester office, Ginnie will be focused on permanent recruitment.

Read more

New training dates released

Bluestones Medical has released new training dates for their CPD qualifying courses in Chester and Newport.

Read more

Ladies Night sponsored by Bluestones Medical

Bluestones Medical is proud to sponsor an upcoming Ladies Night! The night is being organised by Rebecca Newson who is a student nurse at the Glyndwr University in Wrexham.

Read more

Bluestones Medical secures platinum Neuven award

As part of HTE Framework requirements Bluestones Medical have to go through an annual audit to enable us to continue to supply healthcare staff through the framework.

Read more

Bluestones Medical secures impressive audit result

Bluestones Medical is very proud to announce it has scored platinum in this year’s Healthtrust Europe HTE framework audit for Nursing. The Compliance team, led by Tracy Lumb, scored an impressive 100% on the annual audit which is designed to ensure recruitment agencies are working compliantly on everything from worker checks, pay rates, charge rates, umbrella companies, training and more! Without these audits, Bluestones Medical would not be able to supply such a volume to the NHS and other government bodies.

Read more

South Wales training success

We had another fantastic training session in our South Wales office this week, with a focus on Tracheostomy and Advanced Airway Management on 20th Feb and a follow-up session the next day on IV Medication, Cannulation and Venepuncture.

Read more

A day in the life

People often ask what my role as a ‘Compliance Officer’ entails. In short, I collate documents together in order to ensure candidates can be signed off so we can start providing them with shifts, but the reality is that it is not as easy as it sounds.

Read more

Compliance update three

Welcome to your February edition of Bluestones Medical Compliance newsletter. Last month we provided you with an update on the importance of NMC/HCPC checks and revalidation. We hope you found this useful.

This month we will aim to provide useful information on the following subjects:

  • Bluestones Training Academy
  • Core Skills Training Framework (CSTF)
  • The importance of DBS update service payments
  • Compliance reminders

    Read more

Spread the love

With Valentine’s fast approaching, we’re in the mood for spreading the love! Head to our Facebook page and tell us why you love Bluestones Medical to be entered into our exclusive prize draw.

Read more

Compliance update two

Welcome to the second Bluestones Medical Compliance update. Last time we provided you with an update on keeping you compliant. We hope you found this useful.

This month we will provide you with information on NMC & HCPC checks and Revalidation.

Read more

Compliance update

Welcome to the first in a regular series of Bluestones Medical Compliance updates. We thought it would be helpful to provide you with information on compliance, mainly because of the ever-changing requirements and so that we can keep you updated at every step of the way with how to stay compliant so that we can continue to offer you shifts with us.

Read more

10 things the male agency nurse can bring to your ward for the shift

I do the rounds as an agency nurse. Obviously I’m male hence why I’m writing this. The agency life allows me to experience aspects of nursing I wouldn’t get to try if I held a permanent post in the NHS or private care. Being a male in a predominantly female dominated profession you often get labelled with a couple of stereotypes that come with the title “male nurse”. These fall into questions about sexuality and not being clever enough to be a Dr. Did I want to be a Dr? No thanks.

Read more

Benefits of working with Bluestones Medical

If you want to find out more about the benefits of working with Bluestones Medical, you need to watch our latest video!

Read more

Another great training event

Yesterday saw another great training session in our South Wales office (in Newport), focusing on Cannulation and IVs.

Read more

Movember update

Well, we have been thundering through November and with the weather changing so much this month – it is lucky the lads decided to invest in growing some upper lip warmth!

Read more

Advanced Airway Management training

Our Afternoon session on Advanced Airway Management in Newport, went down a storm yesterday!

Read more

Movember challenge!

Bluestones Medical are looking for people to join our Movember challenge! For everyone person involved we will donate £50.

Read more

Bluestones Medical enter Chester’s Raft Race

Bluestones Medical have entered this year’s Chester Raft Race, scheduled to take place on Sunday 1st July. We will be raising money in support of the Countess of Chester’s Babygrow Appeal and are currently in the process of building our raft… it’s progressing nicely!

Read more

Bluestones Medical records impressive audit score

Being able to offer our workers shift within the NHS is not as easy or straight forward as it seems. An agency has to jump through a lot of hoops and complete a large amount of compliance in order to send just one nurse into the NHS. To consistently support the NHS an agency has to be part of a “Framework”.

Read more

Jonitson Healthcare has been acquired by Bluestones Medical

Jonitson Healthcare and Bluestones Medical
Jonitson Healthcare has been acquired by Bluestones Medical Ltd.

We’re pleased to announce that Jonitson Healthcare will now be known as Bluestones Medical, forming the South Wales division of this leading medical recruitment business.

Read more

NHS ban on agency shifts lifted

In a complete backtrack by NHS Improvement, they’ve published the following announcement:

Following feedback from nurses about our latest agency rules on substantive staff, we’ve clarified our rules. Until further notice, we’re pausing our instruction that providers should ensure staff employed through an agency are not substantively employed elsewhere in the NHS.

This new rule will not start from 1 April 2017 and providers normal processes can remain in place.”

Read more

Professional pay for nurses

So, the latest news is that the government has announced that health workers are set to receive a ‘derisory’ 1% pay rise (source: Guardian). As you might imagine, unions, nurses, doctors and other healthcare workers affected by the decision are justifiably furious with the decision.

Read more

Guest blog: agency work – just do it

I am a mother to two beautiful boys, Cory aged 12 and Jett aged 3. I live in a village just outside Wrexham with them and their father in our cosy little home. I’m not currently a full time agency worker I just pick up shifts when I can to suit our hectic family life.

Read more

Agencies aren’t the bad guys here

Having just dusted myself off from the recent IR35 developments I cant say that I was ready to be informed about NHSi’s recent guidelines. We currently represent over 2,000 RGNs, RMNs, ODPs and HCAs and I genuinely feel that recently, all we furnish them with is bad news and more restrictions on how they live their lives.

Read more

Substantive posts and agency workers

You may have recently heard about the NHS’s new guidelines to Trusts. From the 1st April if you hold a post within the NHS – then unfortunately, you can’t work agency shifts for other NHS Trusts.

BUT PLEASE DON’T PANIC

Read more

Agency working viewpoint

Hi, I would like to introduce myself, my name is Amanda and I have been qualified as a nurse since 1998. I currently work part-time in the NHS as a Home Oxygen Assessment Specialist Nurse and I work part-time for Bluestones Medical agency.

Read more

New website for Bluestones Medical Nursing

We’re delighted to announce the launch of our new website.

Following extensive research and exploring potential options, we’ve refined our online platform to make life even easier for our healthcare partners to register, find new roles and submit applications through a simplified interface.

Read more

Off Payroll working in the public sector

Off Payroll working in the public sector. Reform of IR35 from April 2017

As you may be aware, there is yet more HMRC legislation on the horizon so we have put together the following guide to inform you of what the implications are of the latest changes.

Read more