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Healthcare provider to recruit 300 staff as Belfast offices open

A community healthcare provider has announced it has 300 jobs up for grabs on the day it unveiled a £2m investment plan and opened new offices in Belfast.

Locally-owned family business Homecare Independent Living said it is currently recruiting across its range of services and is investing heavily in smart technology to support its staff.

New fleet transport vehicles are also part of the investment package.

The positions on offer bridge every area of its service including specialist nursing, social work, domicilliary work, continuing care and housing support.

The new positions will complement the firm's 1,200-strong workforce employed at its headquarters in Armagh, its offices in Magherafelt, Ballymena and at its new premises in Belfast which were opened yesterday by health minister Edwin Poots.

The Northern Ireland company also employs staff in Sligo, Drogheda and Dundalk in the Republic of Ireland following expansion within the past decade.

Chief Executive, Mairead Mackle said the investment in telecoms technology and fleet transport for staff is essential to ensure the company is providing the most efficient and effective service to the most vulnerable, particularly in rural communities.

Its clients include healthcare trusts, the Housing Executive as well as the community and voluntary sectors who provide care for a range of people.

She revealed: "We have provided more than one million hours of care in the last year to 2,500 people living throughout Northern Ireland.

"We could not do that without dedicated and professional staff," she added, stating employees received ongoing training and opportunties to continue gaining qualifications.

Ms Mackle told Mr Poots the quality of service delivered by Homecare Independent Living was a strong example of the successful implementation of the health department's review of care through the Transforming Your Care scheme.

"The best operators in the independent healthcare sector are making significant infrastructure investment at our own risk and this model has to be a prudent part of the healthcare mix in Northern Ireland," she said.

The chief executive concluded by calling on commissioning services to "involve us earlier in the planning process to ensure our learned experience is included in service delivery management".

She said that would result in savings without jeopardising the delivery of patient care.

"There is a great deal of information and support we can give that would ensure an even more efficient and cost effective service so that even more savings to the health service can be delivered," she added.

Belfast Telegraph