19001Two new student nurses have started placements at Nuffield Health Tees Hospital as part of long-standing links with Teesside University.

The not-for-profit hospital, based in Norton, Stockton, has up to three intakes of student nurses every year from Teesside, each carrying out an eight week placement.

Student nurses Debbie Wise and Nicola Bainbridge are now learning on-the-job at Nuffield, alongside former Teesside University graduate Amie Wood who is employed at Nuffield having come through an earlier training programme.

Acute services manager Michelle Court said: “Students who come to us get a unique overview of patients’ journeys from even before they are admitted to when they have their treatment and then return to us for aftercare.

“They work through our pre-assessment process, a patient’s time in theatre and on the ward, and even the management of budgets. Ultimately, it’s about them learning about what is involved in nursing. And, it’s not just us teaching them; having students here gives us further opportunities to learn new things and keep-up-to-date. Everyone who comes here has something to contribute to our high standards of patient care.”

Hospital director Lesley Lock said: “We employ 200 staff and treat 7,500 patients every year, half of whom come to us from the NHS. We’re a good local employer and we’re passionate about playing a strong role in the training of the next generation of nurses for our region. Many of those who come to us as student nurses end up staying with us as their career progresses.”

Teesside University senior lecturer Jules Downs said: “Nuffield Tees supporting student nurses emphasises the importance of student nurses being taught to link the theory learnt in university to the realities of clinical practice. Undergraduate student nurses are supported by very experienced and competent mentors, which is crucial in students’ wellbeing. Nuffield Tees is an evolving healthcare environment that requires nursing care to be delivered to an exceptional standard. Students evaluate highly the exceptional support, respect and recognition of their contribution to patient care, emotional and clinical support and take up all offered opportunities to develop compassionate practice.”

“Some students have identified with the environment of high level of quality practice and are now at Nuffield Tees working themselves as an experienced and competent mentor to other students. May the cycle and partnership continue.”

Nuffield Health Tees Hospital opened in 1981 to serve patients from Stockton, Darlington, Middlesbrough and the surrounding areas as well as from further afield, including York and Cumbria.

Areas of speciality include cosmetic and plastic surgery, varicose vein treatment, spinal services, imaging and radiology. The hospital has just made two major investments, ploughing £300,000 into improvements to patient rooms and a further £300,000 into cancer screening equipment.

Lesley added: “We need the right people in place in the right patient environment. Our latest intake of Teesside University student nurses is all part-and-parcel of providing outstanding care to our patients.”