Green light for health and education centre of excellence at Northumberland hospital

Planning permission has been granted for a £32million health and education centre of excellence in Northumberland.

By David Sedgwick
Friday, 17th December 2021, 8:00 am
The Northumbria Health and Care Academy will be located on the site of its emergency care hospital in Cramlington. Picture by Paul Carr www.CTLphotography.co.uk

The Northumbria Health and Care Academy, which will be run by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, will be located on the site of its emergency care hospital in Cramlington.

The trust is working in partnership with developer Assura plc and planning and development consultants Lichfields.

The 8,000sq m development will accommodate a training centre of excellence, clinical space, conference facilities, office space and meeting rooms.

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Sir James Mackey, CEO of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

The clinical skills centre of excellence will focus initially on nursing, midwifery and allied health professional training

Officials say it also demonstrates the importance it places on striving for excellence, recruiting and retaining the best talent, staff being able to grow both professionally and personally, and for staff to progress in their careers.

Sir James Mackey, CEO of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I am delighted that we have been granted planning permission for a project which is going to focus on and enable excellence in relation to development and education of our staff and the care we give our patients.

"This good news is very welcome at a time when my colleagues and those living in the local communities we serve, and across our region and country, continue to cope with the challenges presented by Covid-19.

"It also truly demonstrates our commitment to being national and local leaders in the provision of healthcare, to being socially responsible in how we support our local communities and to always push the boundaries in terms of what we can achieve.”

The trust is currently going through the process of securing a partnership with a university to be able to deliver university accredited courses as part of the education programme.

Marion Dickson, the trust’s executive director for nursing, midwifery and allied health professionals, said: “Our academy is going to be such a valuable addition to our trust.

"I have had the opportunity to progress to my current role, so I am very passionate about colleagues being able to access the training and education they need to progress in a career which is so rewarding.

"Our nurses, midwives and allied health care professionals all do an incredibly important job and to be able to be at the forefront of educating these colleagues is really very special indeed.

"The academy will also have wider staff, social and economic benefits, so it is fantastic that we have the green light to progress.

"I look forward to working with many partners going forward and thank all involved for getting us to this point.”

Work could start in spring 2022 and will take around 18 months to build.

Jonathan Murphy, CEO of Assura, said: “This is such an exciting scheme to be working on as a centre of excellence in the region, creating a home for training of both the current and next generation of healthcare staff, including nurses, midwives and allied health professionals.

"This hub will be a key connection point between this busy working hospital and the learning and development which will build the future of care, and we look forward to moving the project to site.”The hospital trust, along with the developer, has committed to ensuring everyone is informed and kept up-to-date with progress.

For further information, visit www.assuracramlington.com