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Northumbria Healthcare has been rated the best in class out of all acute and community hospital trusts in the latest national staff survey

Thursday, 11 March, 2021
Northumbria Healthcare has been rated the best in class out of all acute and community hospital trusts in the latest national staff survey

Staff working at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust have not only scored the trust top in six out of the ten domains for acute and community trusts, they have also scored the organisation top of all acute trusts for its staff experience, bringing its total score 1% higher than last year’s.

The trust scores the highest nationally for equality, diversity and inclusion, morale and staff engagement, with 94% of staff saying that the trust acts fairly in regards to career progression, regardless of ethnic background, gender, religion, sexual orientation, disability or age.

The staff survey, completed by all NHS trusts in England, focusses on ten themes and provides a detailed insight into how staff feel about culture, their wellbeing, levels of engagement and motivation, equality, diversity and inclusion, safety and quality of care.

80% of the sample of selected staff completed the national survey, giving the trust the confidence that the results reflect views from across the organisation.

With over 11,000 members of staff, and serving a population of over half a million people, the positive impact of such a happy and engaged workforce is far reaching.

The trust scores best in the following six areas compared to all acute and community trusts:

  • equality, diversity and inclusion
  • immediate managers
  • morale
  • safety culture
  • staff engagement
  • team working


Sir James Mackey, chief executive at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I am incredibly proud that we have been ranked top out of all hospitals providing the same services as us. These results reflect the commitment of the organisation to make Northumbria the best place to work in the NHS in the country. They also demonstrate why we have been rated ‘outstanding’ twice since 2016.

“These staff results, along with some recent excellent performance ratings, clearly demonstrate that our staff, service users and the patients we treat and care for are at the core of all we do.

“The past year has certainly been challenging for our workforce, and it is reassuring to see that despite these unprecedented times, 87% of our staff agree that we act on concerns raised by patients. This is absolutely vital to maintaining a culture of safety, and something that we are committed to every single day.

“We know there is never room for complacency and always room for improvement. The ‘Northumbria Way’ ethos embodies being driven and continually pushing boundaries and striving for excellence, despite the challenges we face.

“I would like to thank staff for taking time to complete the survey and for their continued commitment to providing excellent quality patient care. Dedication which is driven by the fact that 93% of our staff believe that their work makes a difference patients and service users.”

Over the past year the trust has successfully set up its own PPE factory, the Northumbria Healthcare Manufacturing Hub, which has created over 60 jobs for local people as well as ten apprenticeship opportunities. As well as supporting the levelling up of the local economy, this has secured a supply of protective equipment for staff members whilst they care for patients during the pandemic.

This is one of many contributing factors that led to the trust being the first health organisation in the UK to receive gold accreditation for corporate social responsibility (CSR). Being environmentally conscious underpins Northumbria Healthcare’s activity. As a result, carbon emissions relating to energy have been reduced by 40% by the trust since 2007. This equates to 10,468 tonnes of CO2. This all contributes to making the organisation a better place for its employees to work in, as well as reducing its footprint for the local communities.

Ann Stringer, executive director of human resources and organisational development at Northumbria Healthcare, said: “We are so very proud of these staff survey results and every single colleague should also be proud of their contribution.

“Our staff experience programme, which was launched last year and is based on previous staff feedback, has enabled us to engage with staff on a wide range of topics and provided a wealth information.

“This insight gives us the opportunity to improve relationships, on all levels, and to evolve our work to support their short and long-term wellbeing in a focussed and meaningful way. We are confident that this will help staff to feel even more happy and engaged in their work.”

Northumbria has also recently awarded the continuing excellence+ level of the Better Health at Work Award for the second year running, a regional scheme recognising workplaces’ efforts to improve staff health and wellbeing. It has also been made an ambassador for the award, a title that very few organisations achieve.

The Better Health and Work Award highlights commitments of the trust to the health and wellbeing of its staff, patients and communities with the assessor saying it was ‘amazing to hear senior leaders talk so passionately about their contribution to, and stewardship of, the bigger picture with a firm resolve to lead by example’.

Media contact: Laura Keen, Communications and Media Officer t: 07748595855 | e: