Consultancy support

We offer a range of advisory services in both clinical and non-clinical areas with the aim of sharing our knowledge and expertise.  Support can be offered on a project specific, or ongoing basis, in many areas which include..

Financial expertise


Northumbria Healthcare is widely recognised as having one of the strongest financial positions in the NHS provider sector – largely due to the trust’s innovative thinking and excellent track record of financial management stretching back over several years.  In 2014, the trust negotiated a PFI buyout deal bringing Hexham General Hospital back into public ownership thanks to a loan from its local authority partner – a move which is now saving around £3 million a year of taxpayers’ money.  The trust is financially among the best-placed in the country and in 2015 was the first NHS foundation trust in the country to have been given the best possible rating by independent global ratings agency ‘FitchRatings’.  We can offer financial advisory services in a range of areas based on our expertise and experience.

Quality improvement at scale


Since 2014, Northumbria Healthcare has been leading a national project, in partnership with the Health Foundation,to address the lack of awareness of sepsis, lack of recognition and lack of early intervention, all of which result in unnecessary morbidity and mortality.  In the past decade, sepsis incidence has been dramatically increasing across the country and the economic burden on the NHS is significant, with approximately 70% of patients with sepsis requiring treatment in critical care units.  There is clear evidence that mortality from sepsis, severe sepsis and septic shock can be significantly reduced by implementing a bundle of care, using international evidence-based guidelines and methodology.  Raising awareness of sepsis and the importance of early treatment among all frontline teams has been a major focus for the past two years at Northumbria Healthcare with truly amazing results.  This quality improvement initiative has been embedded right across the organisation, urging clinical staff working across 11 hospitals in Northumberland and North Tyneside to ‘think infection, spot sepsis’.  Early indications show the trust has saved an extra 158 lives – over six lives every month – for the past two years since the project began.  We are now working to develop our best practice sepsis model so that we can share this learning to partner organisations across the NHS.

Leadership development


With high levels of patient and staff satisfaction and a leadership team which is widely regarded among the best in the NHS, Northumbria Healthcare has significant expertise in creating positive environments and cultures in which staff can thrive. For almost 20 years, the trust has invested in developing future NHS leaders and runs a number of leadership development programmes designed to support and embed cultures which allow safe, high quality and compassionate patient care to flourish.  We have developed bespoke courses for nurses, junior doctors and consultants which are delivered as intense week long programmes, as well as a 12 month strategic leadership development programme aimed at senior leaders of all professions who have identified leadership as a development focus.  The strategic programme is delivered through a combination of leadership diagnostics expert master classes, skills workshops and individual coaching, allowing protected time for leaders to individually and collectively apply learning through innovative improvement work.  We can leadership development to suit the bespoke needs of your organisation and already work very effectively with a number of NHS trusts in this way.

Pioneering new models of care


In 2015, England’s first dedicated and purpose built specialist emergency care hospital opened in Northumberland and was the culmination of over ten years work led by clinical teams at Northumbria Healthcare.  The trust is at the forefront of delivering specialist consultant-led emergency care seven days a week which means patients who are seriously ill or injured now receive a specialist consultant opinion much quicker than ever before, resulting in a fast diagnosis and treatment beginning much sooner. Senior clinical decision-making from consultants within the emergency department as soon as patients arrive and across a range of medical and surgical specialities happens every day of the week, with consultants doing twice daily ward rounds on a Saturday and Sunday – just as they do on a weekday. The positive impact of this seven day model and consistent level of senior clinical staffing is helping to maximise chances of survival and a good recovery for serious emergency patients. This positive impact is already becoming clear in cardiology where the number of people surviving heart attacks has dramatically increased since the opening of The Northumbria.  Since introducing our new model of emergency care we have hosted over 60 trusts on visits to the north east and can offer an advisory service to help you develop your own local clinical transformation plans and best practice advice on how to bring your stakeholders with you.

Patient experience


We’re proud to say that our patient experience programme is the most comprehensive of any in the NHS and we are consistently recognised nationally for our real focus on listening, learning and improving.  Our patients consistently rate us among the elite of the NHS when it comes to providing a top quality experience of care however we firmly believe there is always room for improvement.  Every year we collect the views of 50,000 patients so that we can really understand what matters most to them when they are at their most vulnerable and we openly share the feedback we get with our staff. Part of our programme involves capturing real-time feedback from patients while they are still in hospital with responses shared openly with our frontline teams within 24 hours so that changes can be made straight away, where necessary. This is not to judge or criticise but to encourage our people to lead improvements and foster a positive mind-set to make things even better.  We expect everyone involved in our patients’ care to have the drive and desire to make things perfect and to deliver a standard of service nothing short of what they would be prepared to accept for their own loved ones.  We can help support your organisation to develop and deliver a similar approach through our intensive training programmes, or we can work with you to deliver from Northumbria Foundation Group.

Communications and engagement


Our communications and engagement service is widely regarded among the best in the NHS and we already work with a number of ‘external’ NHS clients.  Our services include everything from internal communications and stakeholder relations, to media relations and reputation management, campaign development and delivery, digital and content marketing, social media and events management and parliamentary briefing and liaison.  Our team includes experts in the field of engagement and consultation and also encompasses charity, volunteering and community involvement delivered through a range of partnerships and corporate social responsibility initiatives. Our multi-award winning team works both at a strategic board level right the way through to tactical delivery, daily account management and evaluation and will help you develop innovative solutions whatever the budget or objectives.

International partnerships


For over a decade, Northumbria Healthcare has been at the forefront of international development work in northern Tanzania, introducing keyhole surgery and a range of bespoke training and support to enable doctors and nurses to improve care for patients and sustain this locally. This philanthropic relationship has evolved over many years, resulting in mutually beneficial opportunities for NHS staff to develop their skills by volunteering overseas and a growing national reputation with the trust being called as an expert witness by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Global Health in 2013.  Most recently, and as a result of this longstanding work, the trust has become one a very select and small number of active NHS trust partners now working at a national level with Healthcare UK (a joint initiative between the Department of Health and UK Trade and Investment) to promote the NHS internationally with a view to generating income from the sale of NHS expertise and generating a return on investment on taxpayers’ money to reinvest in patient care in the NHS.