Health and care partners outline their vision for Northumberland

Health and social care organisations across Northumberland have outlined an ambitious and collective vision for improving the quality of services for residents.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 04 February, 2016, 15:49
Northumbria Healthcare NHS Trust

Last year, NHS England announced Northumberland as one of only eight areas across the country chosen to take a national lead on transforming care for patients as part of the national vision for the future of the NHS.

Benefitting from an £8.3million investment, the NHS is working together with wider health and social care partners, to pioneer new models of care shaped around patients’ needs.

A new website outlining the vision for Northumberland has been launched ( and a month-long programme of public engagement activity will begin.

Patients and members of the public are also being asked to share their experiences and give their views by completing an online survey.

As more care is delivered in the right place and more people are able to access services in the right way, the vision for Northumberland will also see many wider benefits for the future efficiency and financial stability of the health and social care system as a whole. Health and care partners also want to give people more confidence to look after themselves well, take more accountability for their own health and wellbeing and focus on preventing people becoming ill.

David Evans, chief executive of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Patients, the public and our staff consistently tell us where we can do better to improve access to services and experiences of care and this is a truly exciting time for Northumberland as we work with all partners to build on successes so far.

“For too long services have been organised for the convenience and benefit of the ‘system’ rather than the benefit of patient care and we want to shift this focus and truly transform services by better joining-up and co-ordinating care. All health and social care organisations are fully committed to this vision and are working in a truly cohesive way to make it a reality for patients.”

Dr Alistair Blair, chief clinical officer at NHS Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “We are already ahead of many other parts of the NHS in terms of the high quality patient care we deliver, but we recognise that there is still much more we can do to improve even further. Improving access to primary care services and support for those with complex medical needs in their own communities is an absolute priority.

“Involving local people is at the very heart of our vision and ambition for Northumberland and I would encourage everyone to get involved and tell us about their experiences and what they would like to see improved by completing our online survey over the coming weeks.”

Health and care organisations are working together with Healthwatch Northumberland to engage local people in this work and ensure as many people as possible share their views.

Throughout February, on-street engagement teams will be visiting local communities to talk to local people about the vision for health and care services and encourage people to complete an online questionnaire.

Teams will visit the following areas:

l Wooler – February 8

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l Berwick – February 10

l Bamburgh – February 14 (am)

l Belford – February 14 (pm)

l Alnwick – February 26

The vision aims to give:

l Better support for people to live healthily and stay well

l Better access to timely advice to help people use services correctly

l Improved access to primary care and GP appointments

l Improved integration of mental health services

l More personalised and co-ordinated care for those with long-term conditions or complex needs

l Professionals in health and social care working in a joined-up way

l A shared health record