Healthy approach will help fill gaps

first_img The ageing workforce poses significant challenges to the NHS. We cannot afford any form of age discrimination if we are to retain and get the best out of older staff. It is encouraging that most respondents to Personnel Today’s survey clearly believe that older workers have much to offer in terms of experience, efficiency and reliability. However, we must also pay attention to retaining younger workers and giving them opportunities to develop.The NHS is taking part in research to help us ensure that we are targeting our HR policies to the different needs of every segment of the workforce. And the Department of Health and the NHS have been participating in a major international programme called ‘Demography is Destiny’, led by Ken Dychtwald, author of The Age Wave.The programme was set up to address the workforce issues that will occur in almost all the developed countries over the next decade – as the post-war baby boomer generation approaches retirement age. This is a significant issue for the NHS as retirement from the nursing workforce is projected to grow steadily, and in 10 years’ time, the numbers retiring each year could be 10,000 higher than today.The solutions, which involve retaining older workers, maximising the effective use of scarce skills and tapping into new sources of recruitment both at home and abroad, will lead to growing diversity in the workforce. This will include older workers, many above the current retirement age, working alongside workers in their 20s or 30s.It became clear that the ‘one-size-fits-all’ employment packages, which we have today, would not produce the best results. So a second programme, ‘The Employer, Employee Equation’, has been de-veloping a diagnostic tool, which will identify the main segments of the workforce and the HR policies that are most likely to retain and motivate each of them.Already, the research has produced some significant insights. For example, the group showing the highest level of ‘burn-out’ is not the over-50s, but those in their 30s, juggling the demands of work, families and financial burdens. In fact, the over-50s – relieved of many of these burdens – are often those most open to new challenges.The NHS already has many of the tools in place through other programmes, such as ‘Improving Working Lives’ and the ‘Skills Escalator’. The review of the NHS pension scheme is also looking at ways to increase flexibility and encourage the retention of workers eligible for retirement.The benefits of this research and its diagnostic tool will be to enable managers to further target these measures to gain the maximum engagement of the workforce. Healthy approach will help fill gapsOn 26 Oct 2004 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. last_img read more

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Factors affecting the availability of plant nutrients on an Antarctic island

first_imgAn examination of material from Signy Island, in the South Orkney group, shows that large amounts of plant nutrients are moving through the ecosystem of the island. Physical weathering is a dominant process and the rocks are an important source of potassium and calcium. The ocean provides a steady supply of sodium and magnesium distributed via the atmosphere whilst the fauna provide a large reservoir of phosphorus, nitrogen and cations. Atmospheric distribution of nitrogen from the fauna sites is important but phosphorus appears to depend more on direct droppings and drainage for distribution. The capacity of the bryophyte vegetation to retain ions was demonstrated by experiment. It is suggested that this pattern of nutrient supply applies to much of the Antarctic perimeter zone.last_img read more

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Food, feeding ecology and ecological segregation of seabirds at South Georgia

first_imgAt the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia 25 of the 29 breeding species are seabirds. Fifteen of these have recently been studied in some detail. By examining the timing of their breeding seasons and their diet and feeding ecology (especially feeding techniques and potential foraging ranges), the nature of their ecological isolating mechanisms, and in particular the way in which they partition the resources of the marine environment, are reviewed. Although breeding season adaptations occur (winter breeding in Wandering Albatross and King Penguin; out of phase breeding in two species-pairs of small petrels) these are less important than dillerences in food and feeding ecology. There is a fundamental distinction between the niche of pursuit-diving species (mainly penguins) and the remainder which are basically surface-feeders. The two abundant krill-eating penguins show clear differences in feeding zones. Three albatrosses and a petrel feed mainly on squid and there are differences in both the species and size of the prey of each. The remaining seabirds chiefly take krill (although the giant petrels are extensive scavengers and some smaller petrels specialize on copepods) and utilize different feeding methods and areas to do so. Various adaptations related to inshore and offshore feeding zones are discussed. Although most species possess a combination of ecological isolating mechanisms additional evidence for the particular importance of dietary differences is presented.last_img read more

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Early life cycle of cephalopods in relation to the major oceanographic features of the southwest Atlantic Ocean

first_imgCephalopod paralarvae and juveniles were sampled with RMT8 and Bongo nets during 2 cruises of the MV ‘Falklands Protector’ in the southwest Atlantic Ocean in October/November 1990 and 1991. Each cruise had 2 phases, a northern phase over the Patagonian Shelf edge and adjacent waters, and a southern phase over the shelf around the Falkland Islands. Vertical temperature profiles were used to identify the major fronts and water masses. The subtropical water of the Brazil Current was characterized by the tropical/subtropical Abraliopsis pfefferi and Histioteuthis corona corona, the subtropical/subantarctic H. atlantica and the widespread Taningia danae, species of Brachioteuthis, Chiroteuthis and Galiteuthis, a single specimen of Illex argentinus and an ommastrephid rhynchoteuthion type B. The subantarctic surface water of the Falkland Current contained the richest assemblage of species and was characterised by the subtropical/subantarctic H. atlantica, the subantarctic Batoteuthis skolops, H. eltaninae, H. macrohista and the subantarctic/antarctic Gonatus antarcticus. With the exception of some small Gonatus antarcticus, the polar frontal zone water of the Falkland Current was relatively poor in species. The Falkland Islands Shelf yielded Loligo gahi, Gonatus antarcticus, Martialia hyadesi, Moroteuthis knipovitchi, Batoteuthis skolops, Semirossia patagonica and an Octopus sp. The data provide new information on the life cycles of Martialia hyadesi and Gonatus antarcticus and are consistent with the view that L. gahi reproduces in shallow water around the Falkland Islands with 1 major brood spawning in the late austral winter.last_img read more

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A predatory fungus (Hyphomycetes: Lecophagus) attacking Rotifera and Tardigrada in maritime Antarctic lakes

first_imgLecophagus antarcticus, described as a new species of predaceous Hyphomycete of rotifers and tardigrades, was collected from cyanobacterial mats and sediments at shallow lake margins on Signy Island, South Orkney Islands, Antarctica. The new species differs from similar Lecophagus species by larger, more robust vegetative hyphae and by producing septate conidiophore branches or conidiophores as terminals of lateral vegetative hyphae. This is the first report of this genus from either freshwater or polar regions.last_img read more

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Energetic outer radiation belt electron precipitation during recurrent solar activity

first_imgTransmissions from three U. S. VLF (very low frequency) transmitters were received at Churchill, Canada, during an event study in May to November, 2007. This period spans four cycles of recurrent geomagnetic activity spaced similar to 27 days apart, with daily Sigma Kp reaching similar to 30 at the peaks of the disturbances. The difference in the amplitude of the signals received during the day and during the night varied systematically with geomagnetic activity, and was used here as a proxy for ionization changes caused by energetic electron precipitation. For the most intense of the recurrent geomagnetic storms there was evidence of electron precipitation from 3 < L 300 keV and similar to 1 MeV trapped electrons, and also consistent with the daily average ULF (ultralow frequency) Pc1-2 power (L = 3.9) from Lucky Lake, Canada, which was elevated during the similar to 1 MeV electron precipitation period. This suggests that Pc1-2 waves may play a role in outer radiation belt loss processes during this interval. We show that the > 300 keV trapped electron flux from POES is a reasonable proxy for electron precipitation during recurrent high-speed solar wind streams, although it did not describe all of the variability that occurred. While energetic electron precipitation can be described through a proxy such as Kp or Dst, careful incorporation of time delays for different electron energies must be included. Dst was found to be the most accurate proxy for electron precipitation during the weak recurrent-activity period studied.last_img read more

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Constraining past accumulation in the central Pine Island Glacier basin, West Antarctica, using radio-echo sounding

first_imgThe potential for future dynamical instability of Pine Island Glacier, West Antarctica, hasbeen addressed in a number of studies, but information on its past remains limited. In this study we useairborne radio-echo sounding (RES) data acquired over Pine Island Glacier to investigate past variationsin accumulation pattern. In the dataset a distinctive pattern of layers was identified in the central part ofthe glacier basin.We use these layers as chronological identifiers in order to construct elevation maps ofthe internal stratigraphy. The observed internal layer stratigraphy is then compared to calculatedstratigraphy from a three-dimensional ice-flow model that has been forced with different accumulationscenarios. The model results indicate that the accumulation pattern is likely to have changed at leasttwice since the deposition of the deepest identified layer. Additional RES data linked to the Byrd ice coreprovide an approximate timescale. This timescale suggests that the layers were deposited at thebeginning of or during the Holocene period. Thus the widespread changes occurring in the coastalextent of theWest Antarctic ice sheet at the end of the last glacial period could have been accompaniedby changes in accumulation pattern.last_img read more

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Recent changes in Antarctic sea ice

first_imgIn contrast to the Arctic, total sea ice extent (SIE) across the Southern Ocean has increased since the late 1970s, with the annual mean increasing at a rate of 186×103 km2 per decade (1.5% per decade; p<0.01) for 1979–2013. However, this overall increase masks larger regional variations, most notably an increase (decrease) over the Ross (Amundsen–Bellingshausen) Sea. Sea ice variability results from changes in atmospheric and oceanic conditions, although the former is thought to be more significant, since there is a high correlation between anomalies in the ice concentration and the near-surface wind field. The Southern Ocean SIE trend is dominated by the increase in the Ross Sea sector, where the SIE is significantly correlated with the depth of the Amundsen Sea Low (ASL), which has deepened since 1979. The depth of the ASL is influenced by a number of external factors, including tropical sea surface temperatures, but the low also has a large locally driven intrinsic variability, suggesting that SIE in these areas is especially variable. Many of the current generation of coupled climate models have difficulty in simulating sea ice. However, output from the better-performing IPCC CMIP5 models suggests that the recent increase in Antarctic SIE may be within the bounds of intrinsic/internal variability.last_img read more

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Changes in ice-shelf buttressing following the collapse of Larsen A Ice Shelf, Antarctica, and the resulting impact on tributaries

first_imgThe dominant mass-loss process on the Antarctic Peninsula has been ice-shelf collapse, including the Larsen A Ice Shelf in early 1995. Following this collapse, there was rapid speed up and thinning of its tributary glaciers. We model the impact of this ice-shelf collapse on upstream tributaries, and compare with observations using new datasets of surface velocity and ice thickness. Using a two-horizontal-dimension shallow shelf approximation model, we are able to replicate the observed large increase in surface velocity that occurred within Drygalski Glacier, Antarctic Peninsula. The model results show an instantaneous twofold increase in flux across the grounding line, caused solely from the reduction in backstress through ice shelf removal. This demonstrates the importance of ice-shelf buttressing for flow upstream of the grounding line and highlights the need to explicitly include lateral stresses when modelling real-world settings. We hypothesise that further increases in velocity and flux observed since the ice-shelf collapse result from transient mass redistribution effects. Reproducing these effects poses the next, more stringent test of glacier and ice-sheet modelling studies.last_img read more

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