Horizon reports significant recruitment gains in 2022-23; hundreds more staff providing care throughout health care system

(HORIZON) – Horizon successfully recruited nearly 2,400 employees during the 2022-23 fiscal year, representing a net gain of 550 more health care professionals who are providing safe and quality care for patients, increasing access to services, and supporting our current workforce.

From April 1, 2022 to March 31, 2023, a total of 528 registered nurses (RNs), 337 licenced practical nurses (LPNs) and 523 personal care attendants (PCAs) were recruited to Horizon, in addition to hundreds of additional support staff and allied health professionals.

“The recruitment team has had a tremendously successful year, and we are extremely proud of their achievements,” said Gail Lebel, Horizon Vice-President and Chief Human Resource Officer.

Horizon’s Talent Acquisition team, led by Horizon’s Regional Director of Talent Acquisition Kerry Kennedy, is currently responsible for hiring staff in nursing, allied health (therapeutics and diagnostics), and support services.

The fiscal year began with the implementation of a new recruitment strategy, which included additional recruitment resources, aggressive recruitment targets, and a new nursing recruitment dashboard which is available to the public on Horizon’s website.

“Community recruitment partnerships are becoming increasingly important for attracting health care workers,” said Kennedy. “We are working closely with our community engagement team to help strengthen our partnerships with New Brunswick communities. We also continue to work with various stakeholders and organizations. We have a great partnership with the Government of New Brunswick (GNB) and appreciate their support.”

Recruitment initiatives at Horizon include:

  • A Horizon Nurse Recruitment Dashboard was created on the website to update the public on the progress.
  • The Referral Reward Program, put in place last year, rewards Horizon employees, physicians, and New Brunswick residents for referring RNs. It was later expanded to include qualified Nurse Practitioners (NPs). This program has seen 46 RNs successfully recruited so far.
  • PROMOTE 150, piloted in the fall, showcases 150 different Horizon careers to promote awareness among high school students thinking about a career in the health care sector. Reception from students was positive and plans to expand the program in other areas of the province are ongoing.  
  • The Student Nurse Advancement Pledge (SNAP) program guarantees full-time employment to all nursing students studying to become LPNs, RNs, and NPs at a recognized Canadian college or university. Applicants receive a letter of ‘guaranteed’ offer of employment with Horizon to reduce the stress of finding a job upon graduation. Horizon recruiters work with applicants to find the right placements based on availability of positions in our various locations.
  • A Community Toolkit was created to assist communities with attraction and retention efforts. It has been positively received by several communities as they work to help attract and retain health care workers.
  • Local, national and international recruitment events, including trips to India, UK, Dubai, and Ireland, helped attract candidates from around the world. 
  • Partnerships with multiple organizations, including Vitalité Health Network, Department of Health and other GNB departments, helped attract new recruits. This includes securing additional nursing seats through the University of New Brunswick’s partnership with Manipal University in India, Beal University, Oulton College, and the Université de Moncton.

“We know there is still a lot of work to do. Our staffing shortages are real, and Horizon will need to continue with our high-volume recruitment to backfill vacancies,” said Lebel. “We are still seeing an increased number of retirements, as well as voluntary turnover.”

Horizon is keenly focused on employee and physician engagement and creating a positive work environment.  Key areas of focus include:

  • Improved communication which includes listening and acting on employee and physician feedback.
  • Enhancing employee and physician appreciation events and fostering a respectful work environment.
  • A focus on diversity, equity and inclusion, and psychological wellbeing and safety.
  • Enhanced learning and development opportunities.

“We know the pandemic put a strain on the work environment for our physicians and employees, and we are committed to improving that environment,” said Lebel. “Horizon has a very strong team of health care workers who continue to show up and care for New Brunswickers. We’re very proud and thankful for the work they do every day.”

Recruitment and retention, specifically the recruitment of physicians and care staff, is a key priority for Horizon’s plan to ensure all patients and clients receive the quality care they need. This plan consists of three other priorities, including improving access to care; improving overall patient experience; and improving patient flow at our health care facilities. Further details about Horizon’s four priority areas are available at HorizonNB.ca.   This initiative also supports the Government of New Brunswick’s provincial health plan, Stabilizing Health Care: An Urgent Call to Action.


For more information contact:

Kris McDavid

Media Relations