City Hospitals Sunderland Awarded Gold for Supporting the Armed Forces



City Hospitals Sunderland is the first NHS Trust in the north east to receive a Gold Award from the Ministry of Defence, the highest badge of honour for organisations which have signed the Armed Forces Covenant and demonstrate outstanding support for those who serve and have served.

The Trust, which signed a community covenant with the MoD in April, is one of only 33 organisations nationally to be awarded the coveted title this year. It is the only north east trust to be awarded Gold and one of two organisations seen to be the best Armed Forces friendly employer in 2017.

City Hospitals Sunderland has been a long supporter of the Armed Forces and currently has 15 reservists working across the hospital. Many have been deployed on operations to Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan and it is envisages that some may be involved in the humanitarian support of the United Nations in Sudan this year.

The Trust has a dedicated policy to support the work of its Reserves, which includes paid leave to allow them to attend training. Staff are also encouraged to support military led events, such as Exercise Military Challenge so they can appreciate the work undertaken by the Reserves and gain from their team building ethos.

The Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Gold Awards recognise employers who actively support the Armed Forces community in their workplace and also encourage others to follow their lead. The award scheme, which attracts entries from companies in every part of the country and in the private and public sectors, has seen a rapid increase in participation since it launched in 2014.

The 2017 Employer Recognition Scheme Gold award winners are:

Airbus, Balfour Beatty, City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, Combat Pest Control, DHL, DXC Technology, ER Systems Global, FDM, Forth Valley Chamber of Commerce, General Dynamics UK, Hampshire Hospital, Hull City Council, NHS Golden Jubilee Foundation, Inverclyde Council, Kuehne & Nagel, Laing O’Rourke, Liverpool City Council, Mabway Ltd, ManpowerGroup UK, Metropolitan Police Service, Morson Group, Network Rail, North West Ambulance Service, Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council, Shropshire Council, Skanska UK Plc, Sodexo UK & Ireland, South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust, Transport for London, West Midlands Fire Service, Wiltshire Council, Wolferstans Solicitors, X-Forces.

Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: “These companies have shown the gold standard of commitment to supporting members of the Armed Forces, veterans, and their families. They have taken meaningful steps to ensure the Defence community are not disadvantaged by the sacrifice they make in helping keep this country safe. The actions of these employers make it crystal clear that regardless of size, location, or sector, employing people with military skills is good for business.”

Ken Bremner, Chief Executive of City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are honoured to have been recognised by the Ministry of Defence for the work we do to support the Armed Forces. It is important for us to celebrate the contribution made particularly by our staff who also serve as reservists and we very much value the extra skills and experience that they bring to the Trust. We also employ a number of veterans and are looking at initiatives that will provide work placement opportunities and guaranteed interviews where they have skills that match a role. We welcome the support of the Ministry of Defence and hope to continue to foster relationships to encourage more organisations to follow this same ethos.”

Ben Banerjee, Consultant Vascular Surgeon at City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Trust and Commanding Officer of 201 Field Hospital, Newcastle, has been deployed four times whilst working for the Trust and credits the support of colleagues as instrumental in allowing him to take on these extra duties.

Mr Banerjee said: “Having an employer who values the work we do as reservists is enormously important. My last three deployments have been to Afghanistan and the support I have received from the Trust has been on many levels. I have been granted leave, colleagues have stepped in to provide cover and several members of the Trust have sent me letters, parcels and cakes whilst deployed. There is no better training ground than in a war zone. You have limited supplies and have to be calm and make decisions quickly. I use this experience in my day to day role and share my experiences with colleagues.”

Kelly Bennett, Patient Flow Manager and Night Matron and Major in the Army Reserves, added: “When I joined the Army Reserves 11 years ago, the Trust supported me with my training and then further supported me when I went to Sandhurst Military Academy and then on to Camp Bastion. I have gained so much from being a reserve. I’m now a ski instructor, a mountain bike leader and have trekked in Morocco and Sierra Nevada.

“Joining the Army Reserves has enriched my life in so many ways. My nursing skills have advanced, I have gained confidence in my leadership abilities and I bring the army ethos of team work to my job. I am grateful to be part of an organisation that actively supports reserves and has the highest number of reservists proportionate to employees.”




First round of consultation events for major NHS public consultation completed



31 July 2017

A major public consultation to gather public and staff views around the different ways some aspects of hospital services could be arranged in South Tyneside and Sunderland has just completed its first round of public events.

Called ‘The Path to Excellence’, the public consultation was launched on Wednesday 5 July and will run for 14 and a half weeks until Sunday 15 October. The Path to Excellence focuses on some areas of hospital care which are delivered at South Tyneside District Hospital and Sunderland Royal Hospital, including:

  • Stroke care services
  • Maternity (obstetrics) and women’s healthcare services (inpatient gynaecology)
  • Urgent and emergency paediatric services

Public events will start again in September with additional events being planned and will be announced soon.

Nine events have been hosted across South Tyneside and Sunderland during the consultation so far, which have resulted in:

  • 329 people attending the events
  • Over 1000 comments received
  • 3836 visits to the consultation website
  • 142 survey responses received to date

The options under consideration were developed by small design teams made up of representatives from the consultant, senior nurse, midwife and therapy staff groups (where appropriate) as well as managers working in the three service areas in both hospitals.

Together, these clinical teams have led the development of the proposed options which have passed key tests and are now being consulted upon with the public and the wider NHS workforce.

Dr Shaz Wahid, Medical Director for South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust, said he was very grateful to local people and NHS staff who had given up their time so far to get involved and have given their views on these important proposals to improve the quality of these key vulnerable services.

Dr Wahid said: “The options being presented are ideas that could help solve some of the problems these services are facing andthe public consultation period is the opportunity to share these proposals, for people to feedback their views, and to give alternative suggestions if they feel there are other valuable ideas to consider.

“We’ve already had a number of very helpful comments and suggestions on how these proposals might be improved upon and we would very much welcome further public and staff involvement in the next phase of the consultation process.”

Dr Wahid continued: “Staff working in both hospitals are being encouraged to share their views and to submit any further ideas they might have as to how services could be best delivered in the future.”

Whilst some members of staff have attended public consultation events, further service specific clinician-led engagement events are being held across both hospitals in September for staff.

Public consultation events have been organised in a way to allow people the opportunity to hear directly from NHS clinical leaders about the key issues under consideration and so they can give their views in a way that allows them to be captured, analysed and reported so that they can influence the outcome of the consultation.

Dr Matthew Walmsley, a local GP and Chair of NHS South Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said it was very important to ensure all feedback was captured in a meaningful way.

Dr Walmsley said: “We have been very clear at the public events that this is the opportunity for staff and the public to influence these proposals and that no decision has been made. All comments will be included in the independent analysis of consultation feedback and any ideas arising from these will be assessed in line with the key tests around delivering safe care, sustainable, deliverable for the future and affordable. Following this the commissioning groups can actively consider the issues that are important to the public when making the final decisions.”

He said: “We want people to understand that we have clinical issues driving these proposals and any future changes to the way services are organised would only be made in order to improve the quality and safety of those services for the future.

Ian Martin, Medical Director for City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, said people’s feedback to date was already very helpful.

He said: “It’s extremely positive that local people are taking the opportunity to listen to the issues and think about the challenges we face and are telling us how these potential changes may affect them as well as putting forward suggestions as to how the proposals could be improved.

“We would like more people to engage with us over the next 10 weeks and take different opportunities to get involved to ensure their comments and views are captured in a way that can help influence the final decisions by the clinical commissioning groups.”

Dr Ian Pattison, a local GP and Chair of NHS Sunderland Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “It’s clear that people care passionately about our NHS and want to ensure we have the best care possible and we all have that in common. During this public consultation process, which includes NHS staff, we are discussing these often complex issues together so we can make improvements that will have a real and lasting positive impact on people’s health and quality of life.”

Additional events are being arranged for September and October, including a dedicated event to consider the issue of travel and transport which we know is extremely important to members of the public.

To ensure you don’t miss out on information about these additional events sign up to My NHS via the or contact the Path to Excellence programme.

The public consultation is being led by the commissioners of local health services – NHS South Tyneside CCG and NHS Sunderland CCG – who are responsible for planning and buying healthcare services on behalf of patients.

Working in partnership with South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, who formed a strategic alliance in March 2016 known as ‘South Tyneside and Sunderland Healthcare Group’, all four NHS organisations are committed to delivering the best possible NHS services for the future through the Path to Excellence programme.

How to get involved

  • Attend a public event – visit for details with more being planned
  • Attend a staff session – check out trust intranet for details
  • Complete a survey – available online (click here) or contact us for a paper copy
  • Offer to hold a focus group or event – please contact the programme if you are interested
  • Provide an individual or organisational response or submission via email or post (contact details below)

 How to contact the Path to Excellence Programme

  • Email:
  • Facebook: Search: nhsexcellence
  • Twitter: @NHSexcellence
  • Call on: 0191 217 2670
  • Write to: The Path to Excellence, Freepost RTUS–LYHZ–BRLE, North of England Commissioning Support, Riverside House, Goldcrest Way, NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE NE15 8NY

Next steps

People have until midnight on 15th October to return a survey or to provide a submission.

All feedback will be collated and analysed by an independent organisation (not the NHS) and a draft feedback report published in December. Further public events will be organised to share this feedback, and the next steps will be shared in detail at the point.

The final decision will be made the two clinical commissioning groups at their governing bodies held in public in early 2018, dates to be advised.

Notes to editors

This public consultation is the first step in a five year programme of clinical service review which is in line with the ambitions described in the Path to Excellence issues document

Through reviewing our services the NHS wants to deliver long-term effective solutions to secure improved health outcomes across our area by focussing on five key areas. These are:

  • provide a wide range of safe, high-quality and accessible healthcare services
  • make the best use of our senior medical staff at all times
  • provide value for money
  • further investment in services that are of most benefit to patients
  • sharing resources and services in areas where patient numbers are low.

The table below summarises the key tests to develop new service options that will deliver long-term effective solutions to secure improved health outcomes need for South Tyneside and Sunderland.

key criteria Sub-criteria questions
Supports sustainability/service resilience
  • Does this option support service sustainability from a clinical workforce perspective?
  • Does this option support service sustainability from a population and activity perspective?
Will deliver high quality, safe care
  • Does this option deliver improved quality than that delivered in the current service configuration?
  • Does this option deliver applicable quality/safety/experience standards and regulatory requirements for service?
Is affordable
  • Is this option deliverable without any significant additional cost impact to commissioners and the wider healthcare system?
Is deliverable
  • Is this option deliverable within the next 1-2 years?

Only options that satisfied the key criteria outlined in the previous table were developed further. Options were then further evaluated to fully assess the clinical quality, accessibility and choice, deliverability and affordability implications of the proposals and to inform any decisions around options which could be subject to formal, public consultation.




Little fundraiser taking steps to help other children at Sunderland Royal


11 July 2017

One of our charity’s youngest fundraisers completed the Great North Toddler Dash on Sunday 9th July. Eva Swinbanks (aged 2) was diagnosed with Developmental Dysplasia of the Hip at 19 months and cared for by staff at Sunderland Royal Ward F63 in January this year.Eva’s mum Natalie was grateful for the care she received, and so decided to get involved by fundraising so they could help other children cared for at Sunderland Royal Hospital.

Eva (aged 2) completing the Great North Toddler Dash

“We were so pleased with the care she received from all of the staff at the hospital. They were so good with her considering she was so small and scared and therefore not the easiest of patients. We have decided to do the Great North Toddler Dash on July 9th to raise money for the Paediatric department to say thank you for the excellent care she received.”

Natalie and Eva hope that the money they raise can go towards special equipment for those with conditions like Eva’s; Eva was able to use a special Spica table so that she could sit, eat and play safely while in her cast after her surgery. However they know that it will make a difference in whatever way the Paediatric team are able to use the money they raise.

Maria Lynn, Ward Manager for Ward F63, was delighted to hear that Eva was enjoying being on her feet.

She says: “It meant so much to myself and all the team here on F63 that Eva and Natalie are fundraising to help the boys and girls we’re looking after today. We are so happy to see Eva out enjoying her toddler years after leaving the hospital, and just want to thank her, her mum Natalie and everyone who supported them by cheering or donating – it really makes a difference.”

Public Consultation – ‘The Path to Excellence’ – to commence 5 July 2017


21 June 2017

Public Consultation – ‘The Path to Excellence’  – how we create the best possible improvements for healthcare in South Tyneside and Sunderland

A public consultation around the different ways stroke, maternity (obstetrics), women’s services (gynaecology) and children and young people’s urgent and emergency (paediatrics) NHS services could be arranged in South Tyneside and Sunderland will start in July 2017.


What is it?

A consultation to gather public views around the different ways some aspects of NHS hospital services could be arranged in South Tyneside and Sunderland will start on 5th July.

It will run for 14 and a half weeks from Wednesday 5th July until Sunday 15th October, and will focus particularly on some areas of hospital care which are delivered at South Tyneside District Hospital and Sunderland Royal Hospital including:

  • Stroke services specifically hospital (acute) care and hospital-based rehabilitation services
  • Maternity services (obstetrics) covering hospital-based birthing facilities i.e. where you would give birth to your baby
  • Women’s services (gynaecology) covering inpatient surgery where you would need an overnight hospital stay
  • Children and young people’s (paediatrics urgent and emergency) services and special care baby units.

This period of consultation will include a series of public events and a range of ways for local people to get involved, find out more about the issues under consideration and to give their views.

Read the media release

Local NHS clinical leaders will explain the challenges around the way these services are currently being delivered, the different ways local doctors, nurses and hospital-based therapy staff think these services could be provided both now and in the future, and listen to public feedback about these different proposals.


How to get involved:

  • Attend an event: Click here for dates and venues. and information on how to register.
  • Hold a focus group: We are keen to hear from group who work with people who may face barriers to taking part in this consultation.
  • Complete our survey: Access this online or request a paper copy by contacting us using the details below.  This will be available from 5 July 2017.
  • Email:
  • Facebook: Search: nhsexcellence
  • Twitter: @NHSexcellence
  • Call: 0191 217 2670





How to cancel or change an outpatient appointment

If you wish to cancel or amend your appointment please call the relevant number below so that your appointment can be re-arranged and your appointment slot offered to another patient.   The offices are open:

  • Monday to Thursday – 7.30 am to 7 pm
  • Friday – 7.30 am to 6 pm
  • Saturday – 8 am to 1 pm

For outpatient appointments at Sunderland Royal Hospital, Monkwearmouth Hospital and the Galleries Health Centre call: 0191 541 0101

For outpatient appointments at Sunderland Eye Infirmary call: 0191 565 6256 ext 49072.

If your first outpatient appointment has been booked through the Choose and Book E-Referral system, you can change your appointment online or by calling the e-Referral appointments line on 0345 608 8888 (Mon to Fri 8 am – 8 pm, Sat – Sun 8 am – 4 pm)

Please note if you have missed your appointment without giving us prior notice you may be removed from the waiting list altogether, in which case you will need to ask your GP to re-refer you back to the hospital. Over the past year more than 50,000 patients failed to attend their outpatient appointment at City Hospitals Sunderland without giving any prior notice whatsoever. This is a significant waste of resources, which not only has a considerable impact on how quickly we can see and treat people.






Apprenticeship success at City Hospitals Sunderland

At City Hospitals Sunderland, we believe in providing opportunities for people to develop a career, especially local young people who are looking for that first step on the career ladder. As part of this commitment we have offered apprenticeships across a range of areas. Apprenticeships give people the opportunity to progress and develop a career within the Trust and earn while they learn.

Here’s a little bit about the success of our most recent apprentices.

18 Year Old Grace Cogdon from Seaburn is a Business Administration Apprentice and has worked within our Work Experience and Apprentice Team since October 2016. Grace thoroughly enjoys her job and the wide range of responsibilities she is given in order to provide her with as much experience as possible. Grace said: “My apprenticeship has had a huge impact on my life, as the real world of work has been revealed to me while earning a qualification at the same time.” Grace also recently won Apprentice of The Year Award in Professional Business Services for her hard work within the department.

Megan Cook, 17 from Murton, is a Pharmacy Apprentice and is nearing completion after breezing through her training and securing a full time job as a Band 2 Pharmacy Assistant. Megan went to Easington Academy and passed all of her GCSE’s with flying colours before starting her apprenticeship with our Inpatients Pharmacy in August 2016. She is currently studying a NVQ Level 2 in Pharmacy Services, and commented that an apprenticeship is ‘the best experience anyone can have’.

20 year old Sean Scott from Ford Estate is another one of our successful apprentices. Sean works in our IT Department as a Junior Network Operator after completing a Level 3 apprenticeship in IT and Telecom Communications. He is a valued member of the team, and has proven to be confident in facing any challenges presented to him. Sean went to Thornhill School and joined us in 2015 aged 19. He described his apprenticeship as ‘very enjoyable and I would advise everyone to give it a go’.

We will shortly be advertising Level 2 Apprenticeships in Business Admin, Pharmacy and IT on NHS Jobs.

Optometrist inventor on the lookout for production partner

An optometrist turned inventor is looking for a production partner to manufacture a new device to solve the problem of taking accurate eye measurements of children with Down’s Syndrome.

Conventional eye testing equipment to measure focusing ability sits close to the face and encourages children to look directly at a target so the optometrist can take the measurement. An inability to hold close focus is known as an accommodative lag. It is more common in children with Down’s Syndrome, who often have learning difficulties and find it hard to concentrate on the target for long enough to get an accurate reading.

Family optometrist Simon Berry, who specialises in children’s eye care at his practice in Gilesgate, Durham, and also works at Sunderland Eye Infirmary as a Specialist Optometrist, felt there was a gap in the market for something more engaging to hold their attention whilst taking the clinical measurements.

“Current devices record measurements slightly off-axis, and if the child is not interested in the target it compounds the problem,” said Simon.

“Children with special needs often have difficulty engaging in the eye test enough to obtain an accurate reading. I felt there had to be a way around the problem.”

Simon approached Durham University’s Physics and Engineering departments and worked with final year engineering students Matt Grozier and Fred Noble, who used 3D printing technology to produce his prototype in just two weeks.

It works by using mirrors and glass to act as a mini cinema screen so the child can look at familiar pictures such as their favourite TV characters, pictures of their own pets or any other image or video that the parent knows will hold their attention. The parent’s own mobile phone can even be attached to the back to provide the images, and the result is that the patient looks directly into the device long enough for the optician to get an accurate, on-axis measurement so the right prescription can be created.

The prototype has been endorsed by Dr Margaret Woodhouse OBE, senior lecturer and optometrist at Cardiff University and a leading specialist in the visual development of children with Down’s Syndrome, who believes it could solve a real issue in the children’s eye care sector.

The technology has been tested with help from Special iApps, an educational app developer for children with special educational needs.

“It has been a very exciting process and the expertise of Durham University, and the help from Special iApps has been invaluable,” added Simon.

“Matt and Fred were quick to understand and address the issues involved, and used the University’s world-class facilities and the expert knowledge of colleagues in the Physics and Engineering departments to produce the prototype in a very short time span.

“There are around 12,500 optometrists and eye departments in the UK, so the market for this is very healthy. Even at this stage we have had interest from a number of sources, and we are now looking for a production partner to help us take it to market.”

Book your place on our hospital abseil!

Join us on Sunday the 17th of September for our abseil down Sunderland Royal Hospital! Fundraise for the area of the hospital you feel passionate about – and have a little adventure along the way too.To take part you will need to be available between 08:30am and 5:00pm on the day of the event. We will let you know what time you will need to arrive closer to the date once bookings are closed.


Press the “Book my place” button below to pay your £20 registration fee; once we’ve received your payment we will need to complete a disclosure form and fundraising agreement to confirm your place (don’t worry, it only takes 2 minutes!)How much will I have to raise?We ask that you commit to trying to raise at least £200 – but don’t worry, we won’t give up your place if you don’t quite get there! Our fundraiser Andy is available for support if you get stuck.

Any questions?

Get in touch with Andy at or on Twitter at @CityHospSund

Refund policy: If you choose to cancel your booking or have made a payment in error contact within 7 days of booking to organise a refund. Decisions regarding refund requests received later than 7 days following payment are at the discretion of the charity.

New bereavement suite unveiled at City Hospitals Sunderland

A new bereavement suite in the maternity unit at Sunderland Royal Hospital has been officially opened today by former Emmerdale and Billy Elliot star, Charlie Hardwick.

The Louis Suite, supported by local charity 4Louis, is a flagship suite that that will allow parents and their families to spend time with their child and can be replicated in other hospitals.

4Louis supports parents who have experienced the loss of a child. The charity was set up by Kirsty McGurrell after she lost her son, Louis in 2009. Since then Kirsty and her parents, Bob and Tracy have worked with the hospital to provide cold cots and memory boxes for bereaved parents and have worked with the maternity team to create a dedicated bereavement room that was set away from the other delivery room and provides a safe, private space for parents and families to deliver and stay with their baby during those first hours / days, or if they have experienced a sudden loss.

The new room is soundproofed and has a kitchen and sitting area, ensuite bathroom and extra sleeping area so that families can stay together.

Until today the family had no idea that the room would be named after Louis, but due to feedback from social media there was overwhelming support for the name. Also at the opening was former Middlesbrough football player, Stuart Parnaby and other bereaved parents who have made generous donations towards the suite and the charity.

Writer, broadcaster and founder of the Academy of Fabulous Stuff, Roy Lilley took time to see the new room after donating a painting and short verse that he specifically designed for the bereavement suite. He was joined by Dr Theresa Porrett, Co-founder of the Academy of Fabulous Stuff.

Sheila Ford, Head of Midwifery at City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Losing a child is an incredibly traumatic experience and it’s important that families are given the space and privacy to be able to receive support and be able to grieve. We have worked with 4Louis for a number of years and really appreciate the input that they have given us in terms of understanding what we can do to support parents and families and make such a difficult time that little bit easier.

“We could not have achieved this without the generous support from the charity and from donations received from parents who have also experienced such loss. Whilst we never want to see any family go through bereavement, we are grateful to be able to provide this flagship suite and will continue to listen to feedback to make sure that we are continually improving the care we offer.”

Bob McGurrell, Trustee of 4Louis added: “After the loss of Louis in 2009 things weren’t perfect because of the loss and the surroundings that we had with pictures of mum’s breastfeeding on the wall and things like that. For me that was something that needed to change. To help Kirsty get through the trauma we started the charity 4Louis to keep his name going. We started by giving Sunderland Royal Hospital ten memory boxes as one off gifts then it just went mad. We now provide them to over 200 hospitals and hospices free of charge. We’re just a small family run charity, but we saw so many things that needed to be changed and one of the things was the provision for a family to grieve in privacy and with dignity.

“It’s a great facility for everybody in Sunderland and I sincerely hope that no one has to use it, but in reality people will and it’s going to be a much nicer environment to be protected and cocooned and deal with your grief at a difficult time in private.”

Reward & Recognition Awards 2017

We are now seeking nominations for this year’s Reward and Recognition Awards.  These awards seek to reward members of staff who have gone over and above what is expected of them in their role – either clinical or non-clinical, individually or as part of a team.

The winners will be announced at an event in November which also celebrates the long service of those members of staff who have worked in the NHS for 30 or 40 years.

Nominations can be received from patients or members of staff who have witnessed exceptional service.  More information on the individual categories can be found below along with a nomination form at the very bottom of the page.


How to enter

Nominations must be made on the attached form and either placed in the mail or emailed to:  Please ensure you complete all sections.

If you feel your nominee falls into two or more categories, please complete two or more forms.

Please remember you should provide sufficient information regarding the nomination to help the judging panel.   The deadline for entries is Friday, 8 September 2017.

The judging panel will be looking for nominations which match the Trust’s corporate objectives of putting people first, listening, encouraging new ideas, promoting teamwork and leadership, and excellence in health.


General Criteria

The judges will be looking to make sure all entries meet both the general criteria and the criteria specific to the award category you are entering.

General criteria:

  • Exceptional quality above and beyond what is expected of their role. You need to be able to demonstrate that the nominee has gone the extra mile.
  • Enthusiasm and commitment to the Trust and its goals.
  • A sustained contribution over a period of time.

Customer Service Award – Individual and Team

This award recognises a team of staff and an individual who has demonstrated excellent customer care by putting the patient or customer (ie another department within the Trust or organisation external to the Trust) at the centre of the service.  Our vision sets out the need for us to work to the highest standards found within other service industries so patients find that the quality of service they receive is delivered on sound, caring principles and their stay with us is as comfortable and stress free as possible.

This award will value those staff who have respected, listened and responded to the needs of customers – whether that is patients and their carers or other services in or outside the Trust in ensuring they have a good experience.

The entry must explain how the individual or team has provided a service which has consistently exceeded expectations.

Service Improvement and Innovation Award – Individual or Team

This award seeks to celebrate and honour those who have either:

  • Implemented improvements and innovative ideas which have ultimately enhanced patient experience; or
  • improved patient safety and/or reduced risk within their care delivery.

Every part of the work we do impacts on our patients and small examples of innovation can often be the most effective in changing the way a team works. The judging panel is looking for examples of hard work and bright ideas which produce excellent outcomes. The service improvement does not need to be “ground-breaking” – the panel will be looking for evidence that the change has had a positive and sustained impact on patient experience and/or safety. Entries must show:

  • how, or why, the need to make improvements was identified;
  • how the change has had a positive impact on the patient experience or safety; and
  • how the improvements were measured and will be sustained.


Care & Compassion Award

This  award seeks to award an individual who epitomises everything that leads to outstanding care and compassion. They are able to demonstrate the values outlined in the “6 C’s” – listed below.

  1. Care
  2. Compassion
  3. Competence
  4. Communication
  5. Courage
  6. Commitment

Whilst the 6 C’s is primarily a nursing tool, we believe the principles can be applied to any member of staff so the judging panel will welcome entries from all disciplines – not just nursing.

Outstanding Contribution

This award will look for someone who is an inspiration to staff here at CHS.  They will be instrumental in motivating and encouraging others to achieve our aims.

This person will be making an outstanding contribution to the development of services, someone who “makes real” our commitments to outstanding patient care through their own daily work, will have demonstrated a sustained contribution over a period of time and overcome challenges in order to achieve goals.

Team of the Year Award – Clinical Team of the Year Award – Non-Clinical

These awards will recognise teams which have consistently given the very best service to their patients, clients or customers (who may be other departments).  The teams will show true team working, with valued contribution from all members of staff at any level and any discipline, resulting in the best environment in which care or a service is delivered and for staff to work.

The entry must show:

  • they have used the principles of team working to achieve good practice;
  • they have provided an improved performance or service as a result of multi–disciplinary team working; and
  • can demonstrate significant achievements and commitment.
  • compassionate care (for clinical areas).


Leadership Award

This is awarded to an individual who shows exceptional leadership skills in one or more of the following:

  • Demonstrable outcomes in performance, locally or organisationally, due to their contribution and leadership.
  • Leading staff through organisational development or change.
  • Encouraging and motivating staff to develop and achieve personal and/or organisational goals.

The individual will be someone who places quality at the heart of everything they do and inspires every member of the team. Entries must show how the nominee’s leadership behaviour has impacted on the quality of the service delivered to the benefit of patients or customers and their staff.

Nomination Form 2017


City Hospitals Sunderland ranked top NE acute trust by doctors in training

A recent survey of junior doctors has ranked City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Trust as the top acute trust in the region for postgraduate training.

The GMC survey looks at the quality of postgraduate medical education training across the UK and ranked the Trust 25th nationally out of 207 trusts / boards.

The survey is conducted annually to gauge the view of doctors in training to ensure that they receive the highest quality training in a safe and effective clinical environment. The North East came out top in 15 of the 17 indicators, which is a great boost to the NHS across the region.

Catherine Emmerson, Director of Medical Education, said: “We are delighted to have been recognised at the top acute trust in the region for postgraduate medical education. This shows that the Trust provides an excellent working environment for trainees and makes them feel supported and confident to progress in their careers.

“A lot of hard work goes on behind the scenes and I would like to thank all colleagues that support our trainees and give them the very best standards of training and mentoring. I would also like to pay tribute to our doctors in training. They are fantastic ambassadors for the Trust and I am pleased to say that all our F1 and F2 trainees have all successfully progressed this year and will now continue onto their second year of training or into other posts.”

Nurses and midwives join forces on NHS path to excellence

Over 350 nurses and midwives working across the NHS in South Tyneside and Sunderland have gathered together today for the first joint annual conference between South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust.

The inaugural conference between the two organisations brought together nursing and midwifery teams to celebrate and showcase the excellence work taking place to improve local NHS services and enhance patient experiences of care.

In his opening address, Chief Executive of South Tyneside and City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trusts Ken Bremner, paid tribute to the vital role of nurses and midwives and thanked staff their unwavering commitment to deliver high quality, safe patient care as demand for NHS services and public expectations continue to rise.

He said: “The pressures on our NHS are, without doubt, greater than ever before and this means the challenges facing our frontline teams, every day, are also greater than ever before.

“I am immensely proud to be here today to celebrate the amazing work of our nurses and midwives but also to reflect together about how we can continue to improve and strive for excellence in everything we do for our patients in Sunderland and South Tyneside.

“The challenges facing the NHS mean we must think differently about how we care for patients in future and what we can do to keep our patients healthy and well – the knowledge and skills of our nurses and midwives means they are pivotal in helping us evolve our services in years to come.”

Melanie Johnson, Executive Director of Nursing & Patient Experience across both South Tyneside and City Hospitals Sunderland, added: “Nursing and midwifery is a complex and demanding profession and our teams across South Tyneside and Sunderland do a truly exceptional job, every single day, providing compassionate care for our patients.

“Despite the pressures they face, our nursing staff are constantly looking beyond the day job for ways in which they can lead improvements in patient care and today’s conference demonstrates the passion and commitment we all share to continuously raise the bar on quality.

“As nursing and midwifery professionals we must continue to strive for excellence in everything we do and push the boundaries on what we can achieve individually, and collectively as a nursing body, to the benefit of our patients, their families and the wider NHS.”

A number of key note speeches and topics were covered during the event, including:

*             the future of bladder and bowel care

*             improving outcomes in a paediatric diabetes clinic

*             the role of nurse practitioners in pre-operative care

*             pressure ulcer improvement in out-of-hospital care settings

*             falls prevention in hospitals

Motivational speaker Matt King OBE, who has gone from a paralysed teenager to a pioneer pushing the boundaries of what can be achieved in life, irrespective of someone’s situation, shared his skills and techniques for maximising potential in people’s personal and professional lives. Katie Banham, from Learning to Flourish, an organisation that develops the leadership potential in all staff, also delivered a keynote speech to encourage resilience amongst staff during times of change.

The first joint annual conference between the two trusts ‘The Path to Excellence, Delivering the Future’ was held in partnership with the University of Sunderland at the Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter’s. Both South Tyneside and City Hospitals Sunderland have been working in close partnership with the University of Sunderland since launching the new nursing school in April 2016.