Student nurses have joined an NHS trust as part of a special national effort to help respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
More than 40 nurses in the final year of their training have started at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust this week.
The nurses will be on the front line caring for coronavirus patients as well as across hospitals and in the community.
Health Education England (HEE) have been working with NHS trusts across the country to help them in efforts to boost the workforce.
Jean Angus, head of nursing education and placements, said: “We are absolutely delighted to welcome this group of nurses to the organisation.
“The deployment of these staff has been a huge task involving a significant amount of work from the team to ensure these extended clinical placements are all supported in practice.
“These nurses have responded to this national call for action. They will be vital in helping our patients and staff during these truly unprecedented times.”
The group, who would have been due to graduate and ready to work in September, will take part in a formal induction, preceptorship training and mandatory training as well being allocated support in their clinical area.
Zoe Slasor and Rebecca Blackwood have been placed in the haematology unit at the University Hospital of North Tees.
Zoe said: “We’re delighted to be back at a hospital where we have already spent time training.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for us to play our part in helping care for patients at such a challenging time.”
The unit’s ward matron, Amanda Skillcorn, said: “The whole team are so pleased to have this extra support in the team and will be doing all we can to help them develop and progress for the benefit of our patients.”