EXCLUSIVE: We follow South Western Ambulance Service on a recruitment drive in the Czech Republic

Paramedic shortage forces SWAS to look abroad Credit: ITV News

In an exclusive report from the Czech Republic, our Health Correspondent Katie Rowlett, joined South Western Ambulance Service managers on their recruitment drive in Eastern Europe.

The ambulance service, which covers the whole of the West Country, is trying to recruit paramedics because of the chronic shortage of qualified staff in our region.

The shortage has been caused by the lack of places on training courses - meaning there simply aren't enough qualified paramedics to do the job.

Emma Wood Director of HR, South Western Ambulance Service

A group of experienced paramedics travelled to Prague and spent two days looking to recruit 10 people to join their team.

They interviewed more than twenty candidates from across the Czech Republic and Solvakia.

The ambulance service says the Czech Republic is a good place to look as degrees are most closely aligned to those in England, while paramedics here have a similar skills set.

Candidates are assessed during a 45 minute interview - where they're tested on their medical knowledge and language skills.

Watch both our reports below: