September 10th 2013

“The support we have received from SaBRE is invaluable”

As one of the largest employers in Nottinghamshire, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust (NUH) believe it is important to look after their Reservists by supporting them through mobilisation and providing them with special leave to meet their training needs.


Martin Garvey is an HR Manager in the Workforce Planning and Information section of the Trust and considers the learning that Reservists bring back to the organisation from field hospital and other environments to be priceless. He said: “Clinically trained Reservists experience medical practice in a completely different environment and pick up some great new skills from the battlefield. These skills can then, on their return, be shared with nursing or theatre colleagues to develop learning and understanding locally. Non-clinical Reservists will gain other, equally valuable, experience especially managerial.
“I have worked in the NHS for 37 years in both nursing and HR. During this time I have seen a great number of Reservists who stand out in the hospital setting as having strong managerial, planning and prioritisation skills that will have been enhanced by having to ‘think on their feet’ in their military careers.”
NUH currently employ 18 Reservists across both the Nottingham City Hospital and Queens Medical Centre sites, and include Medics, Nurses, Operating Department Practitioners and non-clinical staff, predominantly in managerial and administrative roles. This number varies dependant on staff movement.
The Trust has a Public Duties Leave Policy, which SaBRE contributed to, that sets out what a Reservist is entitled to in terms of leave for training and what happens if they were to be mobilised.
Martin continued: “Over the nine years that I have been the Trust’s “link” to SaBRE we have experienced a number of mobilisations, during which period we have had around 40 Reservists in total on our records.
“If I were to give any advice to other organisations that do or do not currently employ Reservists it would be to embrace the help and assistance provided by SaBRE, the support we have received from them has been invaluable. If you do have any concerns there will have been someone else in the same position before so just ask for advice every step of the way if you need to. If mobilised, organisations do receive a salary reimbursement to replace any colleagues for an agreed period of time, which is really helpful if you need to fill the position in your Reservists absence.”
NUH organise an annual dinner for NHS Reservists in Nottinghamshire each year and have recently embraced Uniform to Work Day allowing any staff member, with their line manager’s approval, to wear their military uniform in the work place.

“The support we have received from SaBRE is invaluable”