Some of NHC's staff and board members hold their award at the event.

Awards success at the North East London NHS Primary Care Workplace Awards

Summary: NHC were delighted to be the recipients of not one, but two awards at the North East London NHS Primary Care Workforce Awards on Thursday 1st December 2022. The Awards ceremony, organized by North East London training hubs, celebrated the achievements of primary care organizations and individual colleagues.

Our NHC Chair, Dr Nadeem Faruq, received the Diversity and Inclusion Award Diversity and Inclusion Award on behalf of the organization and Helen Page, NHC director of health improvement and recovery, and the NHC Roving team, were recipients of the Health innovation award for their work with Newham’s most vulnerable communities.

In addition to NHC’s awards, Newham primary care colleagues won 3 further
Special Recognition Award – GP Wax for his work around vaccinations
Use of Technology to Improve Working Lives/Efficiency Award – First for Health Digital
Above and beyond General Practice Award- Social prescribing team at NW2 PCN for their work around working with refugees and homeless

Diversity and Inclusion:
NHC’s nomination for the Diversity and Inclusion award came about due to Dr Nadeem Faruq’s work in leading our board and staff to bring the primary care community together with a key focus on equalities, diversity and inclusion (EDI).

NHC began a development series where board members learned together, shared experiences and built a strong team. Individual members were encouraged to be open and transparent about
concerns. Our values were refined to reflect our diversity adding: “Our strength is our diversity” to our established value statement – “We are courageous about change and passionate about patients.” In parallel, NHC began a series of staff sessions. Weekly meetings reflected our commitment to EDI, with all staff encouraged to share stories and information about festivals and cultural celebrations. We started to get serious about tracking our equality and diversity data. Our HR processes were reviewed to ensure EDI is stamped throughout. Management training was also arranged with EDI baked in and every staff member attended specialist sessions on inclusion and diversity.

We continue to actively promote EDI through our services. Our services are constantly reviewed to ensure uptake across different communities. We were early to offer vaccines in the mosques, gurdwaras and temples. Our patient surveys show that 69% of patients said they would highly rate NHC services. Women’s only clinics at East Ham Leisure Centre were full and highly rated. The experience of those in the learning disability and ADHD vaccine clinics talk warmly about the needs of different groups being addressed.

62% of our population is now vaccinated 62% of our population is now vaccinated
including – over 50% of our deprived populations, with locally based services that reflect residents needs. Our roving team goes out to those who are unable to access mainstream services including 57% who are homeless, 83% of those with a Learning Disability.

We pushed NHS England (NHSE) to change the criteria to reflect multigenerational homes.
Our staff recognise our commitment to EDI with 100% of staff saying NHC is dedicated to diversity and inclusiveness, when asked in our staff survey (August 2022). Our staff survey demonstrates that staff see the impact of the Equalities Diversity and Inclusive approach with:
– 5% say they are proud to work for NHC
– 98% enjoy coming to work
– 86% would recommend their friends and family to work for NHC.
– 100% responded that the NHC is dedicated to diversity and inclusion.

The impact of our work has resulted in improved cohesion and engagement across the primary care community in Newham. It is clear that the leadership shown has built a stronger focus on the Borough Health inequalities and a shared commitment to collective Primary Care.
Our journey continues but our commitment to Equalities, Diversity and Inclusion is threaded
through all our work.

‘We are delighted to receive this award for our work on Equality Diversity and Inclusion. We have long believed that supporting our staff to be heard and engaged in the organisation is vital to our success. EDI is integral to our quality and improvement agenda and to see this is being recognised is a great boost for NHC. We look forward to working with our member practices to engage in this work in the coming year.”
NHC Chair, Dr Nadeem Faruq.

Health Innovation: Health Innovation:
Helen Page, Director of Health Improvement at NHC, and her roving team were nominated for the health innovation award for their pioneering approach to ensuring the most vulnerable populations in Newham were vaccinated during the pandemic.

The NHC Roving team was formed during the pandemic when it was clear that there was a gap in vaccine provision for some of the most vulnerable residents across the borough. A new team started working with the practices to identify these cohorts of people and realised that there was an opportunity to deliver additional health interventions as well as key public health messages.
… and so the full Roving team offer began.

Helen Page led the team; her role is combined with NHC in primary Care and the Local Authority (LBN) Public Health team and this partnership underpinned the approach.
Sharp focus on the target groups required key support from GPs, clinical leads, data teams, public health and adult social care alongside engagement with the voluntary and community groups. For the Roving team to fully meet the ambition of vaccinating underrepresented communities they had to maximise every intervention and leverage every relationship.
Public health focused on delivering the right messages and Community Champions, voices from across the borough, offered peer-to-peer support. Clinicians as respected voices supported hesitant patients to shift their opinion.
The team visited housebound patients , community centres, homeless shelters , foodbanks , colleges, charities, overseas students who found themselves stranded, people who had no recourse to public funds- the list went on and on a solution was found for all.

The addition of the vaccine bus made access even easier by visiting parts of the borough where trust with services was low. It brought an energy of its own; an inviting physical presence. Providing health and diabetes checks proved very popular and the readings were uploaded directly into the GP clinical system creating a seamless care pathway.
The result of this positive intervention…
– 6568 vaccines were delivered by the roving team between February 2021 and May 2022.
– Residents in older peoples care homes and supported living accommodation were supported to
access their vaccine
– 600 people with learning disabilities were supported to access the vaccine
– 625 Vials of Vitamin D supplements these were distributed to our most vulnerable older residents
– 2,000 health checks have been undertaken
– 12,000 people with clinical vulnerabilities ( aged 5 upwards) have been called
– 33,000 calls have been made by the Roving team booked appointments to clinically and extremely vulnerable patients

But this is more than just numbers. There have been tears of joy, from homeless people, some of whom did not envisage being able to access these services, feeling that, as they did not have an address, they could not go to a GP practice. Appreciative parents with vulnerable children were grateful for autism special vaccine clinics held in a bespoke quieter clinic at the Sir Ludwig Guttman Centre. This provided them with the reassurance that their children would be well
cared for in an environment that wouldn’t be distressing for them.

In addition to this, staff travelled to the homes of children with severe learning disabilities to allow them to be vaccinated in their own homes.
The roving team have been able to deliver a service that was out of scope for GPs. It has enabled vulnerable patients to feel a sense of self-worth and for them to know that they have not been forgotten in the healthcare system. GPs have recognised the value of this service and what it represents for patients. NEL commissioners are now looking to this model for many other service teams.

We are SO proud of all our NHC staff and Newham primary care colleagues and stakeholders. We have come together to improve the health and wellbeing of our diverse community, and are delighted that our collective work has been recognised as part of the North East London Workplace Primary Care Awards.

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