News, NHS trust

St George’s, Epsom and St Helier introduce app to support international nurses

St George’s, Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals and Health Group (GESH) has introduced an app called Ask Aunty, as part of its support offering to help newly arrived international nurses.

The app has been designed to pair newly arrived international staff with a colleague who can help them settle into life in the UK, and to provide essential information on day-to-day things like opening a bank account, or finding properties to rent.

The trust highlighted at present there are 781 internationally trained nurses working for GESH, who have all been offered a support package including the app.

The app was launched by Arlene Wellman MBE, group chief nurse at GESH, and was inspired by her own experiences of coming to the UK from Trinidad in 1996 and the challenges she experienced. She said: “The NHS is really dependent on our international nurses to help care for our patients and this app will really help them navigate life in the UK and at work… things are much better for international nurses now but we wanted to develop ‘Ask Aunty’ as there is still room to improve their experience.”

On the app’s webpage, there is a call for staff from band 7 and above “who are leaders in their own rights and key role holders” at GESH to get involved with conversations with junior international staff. There is also an online questionnaire which asks international staff for more details about their experiences on coming to the UK, and for more information about their support needs, to help inform the mobile app’s development.

To learn more about Ask Aunty, please click here.

In related news, Papyrus, the national charity supporting young people at risk of suicide, has worked with the Organisation for the Review of Care and Health Apps to develop an app library containing “trusted apps” for young people to use to access a range of information, support, and advice on mental health.

And in workforce, a recent HTN panel discussion focused on strategies for empowering a digital workforce, and how to develop workforce technology literacy through scalable and effective digital learning and support programmes.