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Thursday, April 14, 2022 - 20:36

With ongoing pressures, we're asking you to continue to #DoYourBit throughout the long Easter weekend and think pharmacy first, NHS 111 Online before coming to A&E or calling 999, unless it's life threatening. 

Not all pharmacies will be open over the Easter weekend. Should you need support from a pharmacy, please see attached the list of open pharmacies over the four days and the times in which they will be there to help.

Please note if you do not see your closest one on the list, it means it it not open at all and you should seek the next closest one.

Northumberland and North Tyneside Pharmacy Opening Times

Wednesday, December 8, 2021 - 16:22

Patients of Whitley Bay GP practice to benefit from partnership

Patients of Whitley Bay GP practice are to benefit as the surgery becomes part of Northumbria Primary Care (NPC).

Park Parade Surgery, which currently has almost 5,000 patients and employs 20 members of staff, joins another seven other practices from across Northumberland and North Tyneside, who are also members of the not-for-profit organisation.

NPC, which was established in 2015 and is part of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, provides business and clinical support services to GP practices, at scale, meaning GP practice staff can focus mainly on providing patient care in a resilient and supported way.

NPC is also continually developing how it works with and supports individual practices and Primary Care Networks (groups of surgeries working together to provide patient care). This includes a number of services such as the safe management of patient medication, allowing practice clinicians to reinvest time in other important areas of patient care development. NPC medicines hub services are available to all practices in the borough and are proven to save at least 60 minutes of GP time each day. Other offers include employment, performance, and training services and banking solutions, all of which support practices and PCNs to become more sustainable and resilient.

Park Parade Surgery is the second Whitley Bay surgery to join the partnership. 49 Marine Avenue Surgery joined four years ago and one of their GPs, Dr Justine Norman, has recently been appointed as associate medical director for NPC.

NPC interim managing director, David Hedgcock, said: “At a time when GP practices and the health system as a whole is under significant pressure, it is great that we can provide practices with the support they need to run their services in a sustainable and smarter way, enabling them to focus on patient care and to be responsive to patient needs.  It is important that what we do helps to take a little bit of the strain and pressure off GP practices too.

“We are delighted to welcome Park Parade Surgery and look forward to working with them going forward. As a local resident of North Tyneside, it is a privilege to be part of an organisation that is helping to shape how patient care is delivered in local communities while ensuring practices have access to innovative solutions, in relation to technology for example, and use their resources in the most appropriate and efficient way. If there are any other practices developing their five-year strategic plans who feel they could benefit from working in partnership with us, I would encourage them to get in touch.”

Dr Chris Lee, from Park Parade Surgery, said: “I am delighted to confirm that Park Parade Surgery joined NPC in November. This is a decision Dr Smith and I have been considering for some time and the timing felt right this year. As we look to the future and make plans for the practice to ensure it can provide sustainable and high-quality care, we found the offer from NPC aligned with the Park Parade ethos and values. We are already working on a number of key workstreams with NPC to support our teams and make the challenges that we face every day in general practice more manageable. It feels really positive to be part of a wider organisation.”

Patients of Park Parade Surgery will see no change to the way they receive their care and the surgery clinical and non-clinical staff will remain the same. There will also be no change to the practice’s name.

The other six GP practices which are part of NPC include Ponteland Medical Group, Cramlington Medical Group, Spring Terrace Health Centre, The Rothbury Practice, Haydon Bridge and Allendale Medical Practice and Elsdon Avenue Surgery.

Practices who would like to find out more about NPC should email

Friday, February 14, 2020 - 15:30

Northumbria Primary Care has won three awards at the General Practice Nursing Angels of the North Awards 2020, held this week at Ramside Hall Hotel in Durham.

The NHS England and Improvement annual awards ceremony, which was attended by over 100 people and is in its second year, recognises and celebrates the achievements of and innovation in General Practice Nursing.

Northumbria Primary Care had six finalists shortlisted in seven categories.

Neal Bradford, a healthcare assistant at Cramlington Medical Group GP Practice, won the award for Outstanding Healthcare Support Worker.

Coming into the role, he quickly identified areas for improvement within the practice and implemented gold standard practice prior to a CQC inspection, which in part lead to one of the ratings being upgraded to outstanding.

Northumbria Primary Care’s, Matron, Maria Towart said: “Team members comment how Neal is the glue that holds their team together, having this kind of impact is a fantastic achievement given his short time in practice”.

Neal said: “I am so proud of myself, but at the same time I was shocked. Having only been in this role for eight months, I can’t believe I have been able to make an impression on my team already.”

Currently in the process of completing his care certificate to move to the role of Nursing Associate, he aims to qualify as a practice nurse.

Trainee Advanced Clinical Practitioner at Ponteland Medical Group GP Practice, Simon Warne, 51, from North Shields, won the Education Award.

Having identified his educational talent, he became part of Northumbria Primary Care’s simulation team as an instructor with a new concept of simulation training, which offers a learning environment that mirrors real-life work and scenarios through physical, hands-on experiences for Primary Care staff. Simon’s contribution supported the work published in the medical research journal, The BMJ.

A Nurse Practitioner colleague said: “I work alongside Simon and learn from him most days. He remains calm, is direct, and is very confident in what he does. He is an amazing teacher.”

On winning the award Simon said: “I was surprised about winning the award, I didn’t realise that my personality would be able to contribute to my teaching, so I am completely honoured my colleagues feel this way.”

Maria Towart, a Matron and Nurse Practitioner, from Ashington, who is responsible for thirty-five nursing staff across Northumbria Primary Care, covering seven practices, won the Outstanding Leadership Award.

Maria has supported her team to deliver excellent patient care by enhancing care for patients with long term conditions with structured support planning. As well as continuously improving and modernising primary care nursing by introducing clinical supervision and a quality review process for all nurses.

Maria, 46, said: "I am honoured and humbled to receive this award especially in the Year of the Nurse/Midwife 2020.  I have a fantastic team of nurses and healthcare assistants who inspire me, I could not do my job without their support.   

I share this award with them and I hope we continue to build on our success in the future to improve, support, maintain and develop high quality patient care"

Julie Danskin, Managing Director at Northumbria Primary Care, said: “Maria has developed a culture of care and support and has undoubtedly enhanced both patient care and the profession of primary care nursing

I am exceptionally proud and recognise the fantastic achievement and hard work of all the nursing staff within Northumbria Primary Care”

Wednesday, February 27, 2019 - 15:51

Two Northumbria Primary Care (NPC) nurses have been crowned ‘angels of the north’ at the inaugural General Practice Nursing Awards.

Margaret Wootton and Catriona Wilkinson were both winners, with Margaret winning the ‘rising star’ award and Catriona taking home the award for ‘outstanding leadership’.

Margaret, who qualified as a nurse in 2000 and is now a practice nurse at Haydon Bridge & Allendale surgery, was awarded the ‘rising star’ honour for her enthusiasm and commitment to developing her knowledge and skills, with colleagues in the practice praising Margaret’s work improving patient services, satisfaction and experience within the practice.

She said: “I’m really proud to have won this award and would like to thank my colleagues for all the support they’ve given me to help me develop and progress.

“It is a pleasure doing my job and I love being able to support people in the community.

“To receive such great feedback and the award is absolutely fantastic and a real bonus.”

Catriona qualified as a nurse in 2002 and worked in emergency care before training to become an emergency nurse practitioner. She moved into primary care nursing in March 2017 and now works as a nurse practitioner at Ponteland Medical Group.

She demonstrated her outstanding leadership skills when designing and implementing an acute telephone triage system, which resulted in GP on the day workload being reduced and allocated to more complex long term care delivery.

On winning the award, Catriona said: “Working in primary care presents a whole raft of different challenges and I have really enjoyed bringing my skills and knowledge to a different health setting.

“Winning this award is a team effort and I wouldn’t have been able to win without the help and support of the team in the practice.”

Julie Danskin, managing director of NPC, added: “I’m delighted that Margaret and Catriona have been recognised with these awards, which is an example of the high quality talent we have throughout our practices.

“They are both forward thinking members of our team who have affected real change to how we care for our patients. This is a real testament to their own individual efforts and the culture of innovation that the team as a whole embraces.”

Maria Towart, chief matron at Northumbria Primary Care, said: “To say I am proud of them both would be a serious understatement – these awards recognise years of hard work and a ceaseless commitment to making sure our patients get the best care.

“They are an asset to their practices and to the whole NPC team.”

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 - 16:18

Elsdon Avenue Surgery in Seaton Delaval has become the seventh in the North East to join Northumbria Primary Care (NPC); a pioneering partnership between Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and local GPs.

The practice, which was rated ‘good’ by the Care Quality Commission in 2017, has around 3,700 patients and three GP partners as well as a full nursing and administration team.

Dr Karen Finch, one of the GP partners at Elsdon Avenue Surgery, said: “We’re very proud of the first-class service we provide and of what our team have achieved to date.

“As a small practice we are able to offer an intimate, personalised service to our patients and that won’t change. However, we recognise that, in order to sustain both our unique ethos and the need to provide the best care to our patients, we must be innovative.

“The business support we will receive from joining Northumbria Primary Care will enable my colleagues and I to really focus our time and expertise where it matters most – providing and developing high quality clinical services for our patients – while maintaining overall control of the practice.

“Being part of a larger organisation will also enable us to draw on more resources and our patients will be able to benefit from a wider pool of clinical staff in the future.

“We’re hugely looking forward to this new chapter for the practice.”

Julie Danskin, managing director of NPC, said: “We’re delighted to welcome Elsdon to the NPC family and look forward to working with Drs Karen Finch, Kathleen Mackie, Lucy Fisher and their team as they continue to deliver the personal care which is their hallmark.

“Running a GP practice is resource intensive in today’s NHS. We hope that by providing many of the professional support functions which are needed to deliver an effective service, it will help ease this burden and let them get on with what they do best.”

Set up in 2015 thanks to years of successful partnership working between Northumbria Healthcare and local GPs, NPC now manages seven GP practices with more than 40,000 registered patients in Northumberland and North Tyneside. It provides everyday support to deliver corporate functions, enabling family doctors to focus on providing care to patients.

Monday, December 11, 2017 - 12:22

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