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Hospital staff whose jobs involve everything from taking oxygen cylinders to patients to providing their meals are doing free qualifications under Train to Gain.

Staff from hospital services contractor Medirest are taking free Information Technology Qualification (ITQ) Level 2 courses at Uxbridge College to help them in their administrative work.

The company runs portering services, deals with cleaning and waste management, and caters for patients on wards and provides meals in the hospital restaurant.

The fully customized training, which is designed around the needs of the company, will help staff do their jobs at Ealing Hospital more efficiently. Classes are run once a week at Uxbridge College, and staff can also study on-line whenever it suits them.

Jim Cloney, Deputy Hotel Services Manager of Medirest at Ealing Hospital, said: "I would recommend this training through Uxbridge College - there is benefit to you as an employer, to your employees, and to the industry and even the country.

"Compass, which owns Medirest, is very forthright in making sure that training and development is at the forefront of what we do.

"Training like this gives staff a nationally-recognized qualification, which they value more than in-house training. It also gives staff a sense of wellbeing - and they seem to enjoy it. Hopefully with the skills that they will learn, their job is made easier and their productivity goes up.

"Trained people can be promoted from within which always makes sense.

"I am a great believer that if you induct someone properly, give them a mentor and proper training, you retain your staff."

Tom Kennedy, porter and domestic supervisor for A&E, said: "You have got to be able to use the computer for all sorts of reasons, for example blood and plasma must be logged for the safety of patients. I had never used a computer before I started this course, it is interesting and useful - you can't do without a computer these days."

Radomir Spasic, charge hand (supervisor for porters), said: "Doing this course will give me more confidence to carry out my duties. We have everything we need here at the College and if there is anything you need to know our tutor is here to help us."

* For more information about free training for business at Uxbridge College under Train to Gain telephone Harpal Lehal - 01895 853605, Hazel Fraser - 01895 853703, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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