A HOSPITAL is marking its 125th anniversary by helping to tackle the NHS recruitment crisis and encouraging more health workers to come to Dorset.

A new seven-minute film highlights the range of roles and career opportunities at Swanage Hospital – as well the many lifestyle benefits of living in Dorset.

With the NHS continuing to face major recruitment challenges, it’s hoped the video will help persuade more people – from the UK and abroad – to come to Dorset.

Swanage is one of 12 community hospitals run by Dorset HealthCare. Opened in 1895, the busy site houses 15 inpatient beds, a minor injuries unit, day surgery facilities and a host of outpatient services including endoscopy, physiotherapy and gynaecology.

Thousands of patients are treated or receive care there each year. It has received national recognition for its end-of-life care and endoscopy work, while the radiology unit recently enjoyed a £500,000 refit and was formally opened by legendary football manager Harry Redknapp.

Further refurbishment work will take place this year, with the creation of a new car park, staff room and storage areas, plus accommodation for the relatives of patients in the final stages of their lives.

Around 100 people work at the hospital in roles ranging from porters, cooks and admin staff to nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and radiographers.

The film features interviews with several staff talking about life at the hospital, including people who began their careers there as well as experienced practitioners who moved to Swanage seeking a new challenge.

Matron Donna Kiss said: “When I came here in 2015, I imagined it would be quite sleepy, quite quiet, but it’s not like that at all – there is so much going on.

“We care for patients with anything from a sprained ankle to terminal illness, and every complex, multifactorial condition in between. There is always something to learn, and a lot of opportunities to develop – whether you are a newly-qualified staff nurse or are coming from an acute hospital keen to provide more personal, one-to-one care.”

The video was funded by the Friends of Swanage Hospital. The group has hundreds of members, and local people donate huge sums of money for new equipment, improved facilities and staff development.

Senior Sister Natasha Norman said: “Swanage Hospital is a very special place. Until you start working here, you don’t appreciate that it is the heart of the community, and it is an absolute honour to be part of that.”

The hospital currently has nursing vacancies in its day surgery unit, outpatients department and the inpatient Stanley Purser Ward.