The Dutch healthcare sector will have to fill 130,000 jobs this year and there are no candidates for a growing number of functions, the state jobs agency UWV said on Monday.
More than one million people currently work in care services, of whom 23% are over the age of 55 and approaching retirement age, the UWV said in a new report.
‘We are getting new people fresh from training but far from enough,’ UWV labour market expert Mechelien van der Aalst told broadcaster NOS.
Hospitals, home care groups and mental health services are grappling with the biggest shortages of staff.
‘Hospitals have no more leeway,’ Willem de Boer, of the Dutch hospitals association told NOS. ‘Hospital personnel are under a great deal of strain and many are working extra shifts.’
In some cases operations have been cancelled and specialist care units have called a halt to new admissions because of the shortage of trained staff, he said.
Health minister Bruno Bruins is due to outline how he plans to tackle the shortage of healthcare staff to parliament on Wednesday.