We are an integrated community health trust providing services to children and families, people with learning disabilities, people experiencing mental health problems and people with substance misuse needs. Our focus is always around the service user -– we  want to ensure that they are given the opportunity to start recovery in a safe environment whilst working with talented and passionate individuals.

The work is challenging, but immensely rewarding. Could it be right for you? Here Ifti, our Chief Executive, spoke to a recent recruitment event about why you should come and work for us. Take a look.

Living our values

We expect each member of staff to live and breathe our four core values:

People first – We put our patients and colleagues at the centre of everything we do.
Respect – We respect and value the diversity of our patients, colleagues and partners and support a respectful and inclusive environment.
Honesty – We are open and transparent in all we do.
Do your best – We work closely with our partners to achieve the best possible outcomes for people.

In return...

We will offer you a salary that matches your ability and responsibilities, and provide you with every opportunity to progress in your career and increase your salary through our range of training and development courses. You will also be automatically registered as a member of the NHS Pension Scheme (unless you choose to opt out) – one of the most generous and comprehensive in the UK.

On top of your basic salary, you will receive at least 27 days' holiday each year, plus a range of other benefits such as:

  • Generous relocation package of up to £8,000 to support you financially through your move if you are relocating from far away
  • Incremental pay increases

  • Contributory pension scheme

  • Study leave for sponsored courses

  • Access to a range of work perks, including:

  • Flexible working opportunities
  • NHS staff discounts
  • 24/7 confidential and comprehensive employee assistance programme
  • Annual and monthly staff recognition schemes
  • Cycle to work scheme
  • Eye test vouchers
  • Lease car scheme.
  • Time off work  Life isn't all about work, and working for the NHS means that you enjoy a generous holiday allowance. Staff can expect at least 35 days off a year, including bank holidays. Long-serving members of staff get up to 41 days a year. Generally you can take holiday when you want, but you need to agree it with your manager. In some cases, managers may need to arrange holidays between staff so that a minimum staffing level keeps the business running as it should. The amount of holiday you get depends on how long you've been working for the NHS. You can expect to get holiday in line with this table: 

Years of NHS service Days holiday
Up to five years 27 days + 8 bank holidays
After five years 29 days + 8 bank holidays
After 10 years 33 days + 8 bank holidays


Staff testimonials

Click on one of the buttons below to open up a testimonial from a member of #TeamDerbyshireHealthcare.

Stacey Rach

Stacey has to travel a long way to get to her workplace - the Hartington Unit in Chesterfield. But the journey did not stop her wanting to work there.

After taking a two-year career break to have her children, she really wanted to go back to the Hartington Unit. She says she loves the ward and has a great sense of loyalty and commitment to her work and the team.


Amy HarcombeAmy started with working at Derbyshire Healthcare in November 2017 as a newly qualified Community Psychiastric Nurse.

She was a preceptorship nurse who had a placement in the Killamarsh and Chesterfield North community mental health team. She liked it so much that she applied for and gained a permanent post there.

She had worked in prisons and rehabilitation so she felt she was able to go straight into community rather than into an inpatient area first, and she says it has worked well for her.

The Killamarsh and Chesterfield North team provides mental health support to working age adults.

After assessing a service user's needs, the team will work with service users to help them find both short-term and longer-term ways to improve their mental health, and to focus on healthy living and behaviours. The team may also signpost to other local community groups, organisations and amenities that may help – such as by helping them to meet new people in the community, build confidence, keep well or gain new skills.  

The team is made up of a range of health professionals including nurses, occupational therapists, psychologists, mental health support workers and consultant psychiatrists.

Whom does the team support?

The Killamarsh and Chesterfield North Neighbourhood team offers support to people with a range of mental health difficulties. Examples of these include psychosis, bi-polar, personality disorder, severe depression and anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorders and dementia.

What do you like about your job?

Amy is so enthusiastic about her team. She says: “The support is incredible and my manager is fantastic. As a newly qualified CPN I have had to deal with some difficult situations, and the support from my team has been amazing. Regular and effective supervision is well embedded in the team. I couldn’t have wished for a better team from day one, I was made to feel welcome from the start. Whenever I need anything my manager is always available to give advice and further support. It’s the time that the team takes to talk to each other which is so valuable. I am very lucky to be working in this Trust!”

What’s so good about Derbyshire?

For Amy the commute to work is a pleasure. She says: “I love driving around the country, there are rolling hills and beautiful views wherever you look. I have worked in city environments before but I would never go back. I have surprised myself, as I was born and bred in Chesterfield, and didn’t think I would want to move out of the town to work.”

Dr Abbas RamjiConsultant psychiatrist Dr Abbas Ramji, who is part of Erewash Community Mental Health Team, has worked at Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust for the last eight years. 
And during his time at the Trust he has been at the forefront of work to support the Trust’s junior doctors in a variety of ways. 

He said: “The Royal College of Psychiatrists has done a lot of work to promote recruitment to the psychiatric specialty and over the last two years we have had about 100% recruitment which is really positive for junior doctors. I am really keen to carry on this work and promote Derby and Derbyshire as a place to train for junior doctors. 

“We are taking the lead on some aspects of training and we are one of the first trusts in the country to take part in the EPIFFANY training initiative, which supports junior doctors to learn in a holistic supported environment, using simulation to recreate previous untoward incidences.”

EPIFFANY stands for Effective Performance Insight for the Future, and is an educational programme used as an innovative approach in training healthcare professionals. It uses a safe learning environment with simulations which include expert patients and actors.

Dr Ramji said: “We also do a lot of exam practice for junior doctors, with mock exams set for the CASC (Clinical Assessment of Skills and Competencies) exam. We also run an annual poster competition where the junior doctors can showcase quality improvement projects or other projects they are working on.”

Dr Ramji himself has had a really positive experience working for the Trust in the Erewash CMHT. He came to visit the Trust before his original interview for the role, and was really impressed with the team spirit.

He said: “That has remained the case and is one of the reasons I have stayed with this fantastic team. We have a really good set-up with a supportive working relationship with nurses, occupational therapists, psychologists and the secretarial support is excellent, as are my medical colleagues, which is really important to me. 

“It is the people that make a big difference and that make the Trust such a great place to work. Working here is a such a supportive and rewarding experience.” 


Trust Amy GowdridgeSenior Occupational Therapist Amy Gowdridge believes that the right recruitment can really make a difference to the Trust’s effectiveness. 

Amy joined Derbyshire Healthcare from an NHS trust in Hertfordshire in 2017. Amy works as a Senior OT as part of the Community Mental Health Team (CMHT) in Bolsover and Clay Cross and has worked in a mental health role for a number of years, as well as working in Learning Disabilities. 

She said: “As an OT, I am looking at what people do that is important to them – their occupations - and working towards making it possible for them to reach their goals, whether that is supporting someone to become motivated to have a shower or the ability to go to the shop. We work holistically; even when working in a service focused on mental health, we are mindful of someone’s mental, physical and emotional wellbeing.

“We are working with people towards their recovery and the occupational goals that they want to achieve. Our role is so important to people’s recovery, and my training means that I can work anywhere that OT is needed, using my transferrable skills, so I would really recommend it as a career choice.” 

Amy would also recommend the Trust as a place to work, as it is a place where continuing learning is encouraged and where the team supports colleagues.

She said: “All our focus is on the service user. We as a Trust have the right values in the right order, putting people first and at the heart of what we do. It is a place where people are respected and which values equality and diversity in all respects.”

Amy has recently taken on the role of a Recruitment Inclusion Guardian (RIG). Inclusion Guardians are ambassadors who aim to help create a positive organisational culture, promoting fair and inclusive working and acting as critical friends. The Trust has agreed that all Band 6 and above posts will include an Inclusion Guardian in the shortlisting and as a panel member.

Amy is one of the group of colleagues who have been trained to take on this role and she is enthusiastic about it. She said: “The ultimate aim is to have a RIG involved in the recruitment process for all roles. It’s a great way to support an inclusive culture from the start.”

Georgie LazzariGeorgie Lazzari is a Peer Support Worker in the Trust’s Work Your Way team, which aims to support Trust service users to find their way back into the world of employment. 

Georgie has been a service user at the Trust for four years and felt so inspired by the Trust staff who had supported her that she knew she wanted to become a Peer Support Worker and help others. 

She said: “I have been loving my work here and recently completed a course in Peer Support Work and Development which the Trust funded for me.”

Before joining the Trust, Georgie was a marketing manager, but she realised that the role was not fulfilling for her and wanted to spend her time making more of a difference to people’s lives and sharing her lived experience.

She aid: “My role at Derbyshire Healthcare is as a Peer Support Worker in the Work Your Way team. Peer Support is the process of mutuality between individuals who have common characteristics or life situations, so in this case, I have experienced poor mental health and used paid employment positively as part of my recovery journey and I support others to do the same.  

“We help people to access work in order to aid their recovery and we support with confidence building, CV writing, upskilling courses and education, application and interview preparation and also in-work services. 

“When I was out of work for a short while last year I sought the help of an Employment Specialist who accompanied me on my job-hunting process, and now I use my experiences to encourage others in our Trust services. 

“Most recently I helped a client to re-enter the workplace after a 15-year gap due to poor mental health and start a job search in their chosen area with the help of a freshly updated CV. I also use my marketing background to help promote our service offering internally, as well as supporting clients who are starting their own businesses to launch their own social media platforms.” 

Georgie is progressing to be a Peer Support Development Worker, enhancing Peer Support in the Trust and creating development, training and recruitment opportunities for current and new peers and volunteers. 


Lauren, a Mental Health Nurse with the Trust, is a great example of how flexible around your specific needs a role with Derbyshire Healthcare can be.

She was working at another NHS trust, and after leaving that role, went to university to study for her degree in mental health nursing. She said: “I wanted to help others and give something back.”

She now works as a Nurse at one of the Trust’s specialist day services, offering group therapy for older adults who have a diagnosis of dementia, or those over 65 for whom group therapy is advised. This includes programmes on coping with emotions and the six-week Living Well programme. The programmes have very good feedback from service users and families.

Lauren is delighted to have found a role where she can use her nursing skills in a way that works around her life outside the Trust. She said: “When I finished my degree, I knew that I wanted to be in an area that would suit me, so that I could be the type of nurse that I wanted to become.”

She wanted to have a good team around her to offer support and advice where necessary and she knew that the ward environment and shift work were not right for her and would not work around her outside commitments.

She said: “If I have a question or a query, there are always people on the team I can go to, and I can share my expertise as well. A lot of people may think nursing is always shift work, but I work Monday to Friday, 8.30am – 4.30pm, and I don’t work on bank holidays. This suits me and my lifestyle perfectly.”

Nicole Ellis image.jpgNicole Ellis has been working at Derbyshire Healthcare since September 2021.

Nicole spent just over 28 years working in financial services, latterly as a self-employed mortgage adviser. But when COVID-19 hit in 2020, she found her business grinding to a halt. COVID restrictions meant that people were not able to view properties and she could not meet clients.

She said: “I felt helpless and I wanted to do something to support people.”

So she found a role working as part of the COVID vaccination programme in Sheffield, which she loved: “I met lots of nurses and other clinicians and they were amazing people. I just fell in love with the NHS. Coming from a corporate background, where it is all about sales and targets, it was such a change. Everyone was so friendly and helpful.”

Nicole realised that, even though she could not take on a clinical role, she had a lot of transferrable skills that would be as useful within the NHS as they were in the private sector, especially in relation to productivity and management.

She commented: “One aspect of my experience I have found useful is the notion of questioning how things are done and why they are done that way, which can be really productive.”

Looking for a more permanent role than what was offered at the vaccination centre, Nicole came to Derbyshire Healthcare and was appointed to as employment specialist on the IPS (Individual Placement and Support) team. She said: “I thought, if I am going to take a risk it needs to be now. The team aims to help people who have had a mental illness and who feel that they are ready to go back into employment. So my people skills and knowledge about relationship building are invaluable.

“I have been meeting people and finding out about them and what their goals are. We are helping people to move on with their lives and get them back into work – it’s a really positive process. I really feel that I am using my experience and knowledge to help others move forward, which is a great feeling.”

Roksana.pngSome might think only of clinical or patient-facing careers when they consider the NHS. But there are many colleagues within Derbyshire Healthcare who have built a successful career in an administrative role. The administrative teams are a vital part of our organisation, working to support clinical colleagues and playing a key role in our aim to make a positive difference to patient care.

One such colleague is Roksana Pszczolkowska. Originally from Poland, Roksana came to the UK to take a degree in International Relations at the University of Derby. Having graduated, like many young people she found that a lot of roles on offer were agency work. It was through such a contract role that she joined Derbyshire Healthcare. She worked in temporary roles in a number of departments, before a manager suggested she apply for a permanent Band 2 role that had come up in Children’s Services.

She said: “I was so pleased to have a permanent job, and although not directly related to my degree subject, administration suits my skills as it requires someone to be organised and to have a good eye for detail.”

When her team needed more admin support, Roksana was encouraged to apply for the band 3 role that became available, which also meant that she started in a supervisory role.

She was then approached to apply for a Band 5 secondment role on the IT team, which she said she found really interesting as it developed her knowledge of SystmOne. The role was not one she would have considered until a colleague suggested to her how well she would do at it. When the secondment came to an end, she applied for and was appointed to her current Band 6 role on the Substance Misuse team, where she is a Performance Officer and Data Analyst. This means she looks at the data for the Substance Misuse team and how the team is performing against certain criteria.

Roksana commented: “There are lots of opportunities within the Trust. You have the chance to work with other people and get to know them, and try some different things that make use of your skills. I feel that I have done really well to have achieved what I have here, and I am very proud of myself for developing my skills and progressing within the service, working on different projects.”

Roksana’s initial qualifications were taken in Poland, which means that while she is educated to degree level, she doesn’t have GCSEs in maths and English. She was able to complete Functional Skills qualifications, an equivalent level to GSCE, through the Trust, to tick those boxes for any future applications.

She has also thrown herself into other activities and opportunities available through the Trust. She has recently finished the Aspiring To Be leadership programme, is a member of the Trust Staff Forum, which meets regularly to discuss issues affecting colleagues, and is also a Wellbeing Champion, which means she is on hand to support individual colleagues with wellbeing issues, under the guidance of the Trust Wellbeing team.

She has also taken the opportunity, when in a new role, to shadow a more experienced colleague to help her understand what she needs to do and how the team is structured.

She said: “I was always asking questions – which meant that people started suggesting that I might like to take on secondments to bring me new skills. These are all ways where you can meet other people within the Trust and see what they do. I am always keen to get involved and see how I can improve. Even if you are not a clinical colleague here, you can still do meaningful relevant training and better your skills.”

Image of Kyle Dean's head and shoulders'The pandemic and me'

When the pandemic first hit in March 2020, Kyle Dean was doing a job he loved as a Community Psychiatric Nurse (CPN) with the Early Intervention In Psychosis Service in the Derby City and South County Community Team.

The world was turned upside down and people were urged to work from home and in the community, home visits were restricted, and many community services went digital. With his came a call for redeployment across the NHS and that was the same in Derbyshire Healthcare. Services were certainly changed but we still needed to provide care to the most unwell patients who were being cared for on our inpatient wards.

Kyle, who had previously worked on inpatient areas, responded to the call for redeployment volunteers and went back to his old ward – Ward 36 on the Radbourne Unit. Things had changed though; there were lots of new staff, many staff were self-isolating at home and everyone was dealing with the changing (sometimes daily) guidance that was coming from the centre and the need to wear PPE, along with the other restrictions involved in managing the pandemic.

Ward 36 was designated an admissions ward as one of the measures to make the management of COVID positive patients more flexible, so an acute mixed ward with male and female patients. This couldn’t have been managed without the support of the Trust’s senior management and the willingness of the staff to work flexibly and at a fast-changing pace.

Because Kyle had redeployed so quickly, he was still getting calls from community clients, family members and even other professionals. He was supported to use one of his days in the week to dedicate that time to those clients and the covering nurse, and that made their treatment much improved due to the continuity of contact and support. The Trust also supported Kyle to continue to work his community role hours as he needed to fit work in with childcare.

All this supported Kyle in his redeployment and meant that despite the challenges he really enjoyed the move back to an inpatient setting. However, this period came to an end in July 2020, when it looked like things might be levelling off, and Kyle returned to his substantive post.

He takes up the story:

“I loved my team and patients in the community but there is something energising about managing an inpatient service. People come into hospital very unwell, we care for them and then they get better and go home back to their families. That is immensely rewarding. The team on Ward 36 are enthusiastic, dynamic, motivated, and talented. So, when the Ward Manager left for another role, I was keen to apply.

“The team themselves gave me the confidence to think that I could lead them, and I was delighted to be successful in my application. I started early as we went into the second wave and started my substantive role in December 2020; so, I’ve been doing it for a year now.

"I love my role; I love leading and developing the team and I love seeing people go home after a period of severe illness almost back to themselves. In June last year the ward became all male, although we obviously still have a mixed staff group.

"Whilst no-one would ever say they wanted a pandemic there have been good things that have come out of it for me. The most important was the birth of my second daughter; the other thing is the opportunities I have been given to grow my career, with a great blend of support and encouragement from the Trust and my manager. I’m loving my job and part of my role now is act as an ambassador for the Trust and to continue to recruit and retain the great nursing staff that we need now and in the future.”

The video below spotlights a number of colleagues from different services as they share their experience of working at Derbyshire Healthcare and why they think it is a great place to work. See what they have to say!

Working as a Consultant at Derbyshire Healthcare

Come and join a caring and close-knit team – one that works alongside service users to help them lead meaningful and satisfying lives. Come and find work-life balance at the gateway to the Peak District, only 90 minutes from London.

Learn more and watch videos featuring our consultants.

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