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RETAIN study will look at rural dispensing practice staff recruitment and retention

Aims to understand factors affecting clinical and non-clinical staffing

July 6th 2021

Tagged: HR Zone news Rurality England Research

By Charles Gladwin

Researchers are looking to interview 20 current or former staff from rural practices for a qualitative study on factors affecting staff employment. The research is intended to inform national policy and practice and to provide further understanding of the barriers and facilitators to working in rural dispensing primary care.

Practice nurses, receptionists or administrators, practice managers, dispensing or prescribing staff or general practitioners who have experience of working in England are among those invited to participate. Hour-long interviews will be conducted via a multimedia platform, such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams or Skype.

The qualitative study on the recruitment and retention of staff in rural dispensing practice (RETAIN) is being conducted by Dr Sinead McDonagh and Dr Chris Clark of the University of Exeter Medical School. The study is funded by the National Centre for Rural Health and Care.

“Rural communities often struggle to recruit and retain adequate numbers of both clinical and non-clinical primary care practice staff and this may affect quality of care and patient satisfaction,” they said.

“Little is known regarding the impact of dispensing in rural practice on the multidisciplinary general practice team’s workload, training, staff retention and the challenges of being a patient at the place of employment.”

The researchers will be asking about the position held, qualifications and experiences of working in a rural dispensing practice. The interview may also include questions relating to reasons for choosing to remain in or leave employment in rural primary care, the impact of dispensing income on sustaining the practice and other ways rurality may impact the running of the practice and staff members.

For more information or to express an interest in being interviewed, contact Dr McDonagh on S.T.J.McDonagh@exeter.ac.uk or 01392 722758.