HOSPEEM-EPSU Framework of Actions “Recruitment and retention”

Staff recruitment and retention are key issues in hospitals and healthcare. For this reason, HOSPEEM and EPSU, the EU-level social partners in the healthcare sector agreed, on 17 December 2010, a framework of actions (read press release). This agreement constitutes an important basis for social partners at European and national level to develop concrete action to tackle staff shortages and qualification needs now and in the future.

The key topics of the framework of actions are:

  • supporting the recruitment and retention of workers;
  • improving work organisation;
  • developing and implementing workforce-planning mechanisms;
  • encouraging diversity and gender equality in the health workforce;
  • promoting initial training, lifelong learning and continuous professional development;
  • achieving the safest possible working environment.

For each topic, the framework sets out a number of principles and aims along with actions to be taken by the sectoral social partners.
Download the framework of actions: ENFRDE, ES, SV, BG, CZ, FIN, IT, PL

Follow-up (as of October 2014):
In their framework of action, HOSPEEM members and EPSU affiliates committed to implement initiatives and measures aimed at recruiting and retaining staff along the lines of the priorities set out in the agreement.
On 25 June and 1 October 2014, on the occasion of the second and third working group meeting of the Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee of 2014, several presentations were given about the actions taken by social partners in the following countries:

Mechanisms to access the labour market: jobs for the future and generation contract (Les dispositifs d’insertion: les emplois d’avenir et le contrat de génération), Olga Ville and Sylvie Amzaleg FEHAP / HOSPEEM France, 1 October 2014
The response of NHS Employers to current retention challenges faced by NHS England, Steven Weeks, NHS Employers / HOSPEEM UK, 1 October 2014
The recent challenges for the recruitment and retention of workers in the hospital sector in Italy and the response of the Italian government, Marta Branca and Elvira Gentile, ARAN / HOSPEEM Italy, 1 October 2014
Challenges in the leadership in health and social sector, Kirsi Sillanpää, Tehy / EPSU Finland, 1 October 2014
Austrian joint contribution on follow-up to HOSPEEM-EPSU Framework of Actions, Ulrike Neuhauser, KAV / HOSPEEM Austria, Karl Preterebner and Willibald Steinkellner, GdG-KMSfB and Vida / EPSU Austria, 1 October 2014
Continuous Professional Development (CPD) for nurses and midwives in Cyprus, Zoyia Antoniou, PASYDY / EPSU Cyprus, 25 June, 2014

HOSPEEM and EPSU will also produce a report collating case studies from their own members.
The examples of existing/good practice will refer to strategies and measures agreed and implemented by the social partners themselves (also by means of collective agreements) or involving them (also including material developed by national affiliates/members for the use of their own members), and also legislation and government policies carried out in cooperation with social partners.

Further material and information provided by HOSPEEM member:


Recruitment of young people via employment programmes
Retaining staff through good employment practices
Apprenticeship and traineeship programmes
Ageing workforce
“Nurse Back to Practice” programme
Social partnership forum
(Data on trends staff numbers in the NHS can be found via the Health and Social Care Information Centre monthly statistics)

Longer careers with the job life cycle model – guide to designing an age plan