Our commitment to a new generation of clinicians
We employ an exceptional range of clinical professionals. Contributing to the training of tomorrow’s clinicians by offering work placements to students is one way we can invest in the future wellbeing of the communities we serve.
Our Greater Manchester NHS Clinical Assessment and Treatment Service (GM CATS), provides regular work placements to healthcare students at the University of Manchester, University of Salford and Manchester Metropolitan University.
GM CATS consists of mobile clinics which travel between seven sites around Greater Manchester, typically spending four or five days at each.
It is unusual for independent healthcare companies to offer placements but we have pioneered this initiative since 2012 as a way of investing in the clinical students of the future.
When the scheme started, GM CATS took student nurses for six-week minimum placements but such was the popularity of the placements that the scope has spread and the scheme is now open to student physiotherapists, podiatrists and, most recently, audiologists.
The universities tell us that our service is perfect for students because it offers such a wide variety of skills and our team includes experienced specialists in a range of areas, including urology, ear, nose and throat, gynaecology, musculoskeletal, minor surgery, gastroenterology and endoscopy.
Our onsite diagnostics, which include MRI, x-ray, ultrasound and CT scanning, mean that just as patients can often see a consultant and have any diagnostic tests required in the same appointment, students are also able to see and follow the whole patient experience.
We support our own clinicians to attend clinical tutor courses, funded by GM CATS, in advance of offering students their placements.
We have also invested in developing the skills of social care specialists, using our expertise in dementia care to help students better understand the condition and how to support those living with it. Students at the University of Birmingham’s College of Medicine are among those to have benefited from receiving our pioneering experiential training at their summer school. The training, which has been rolled out across our homes, gives participants insights into how difficult ordinary tasks can be for someone with dementia.
The Care UK Wellbeing Foundation - investing in partnerships and research
As our services have grown, we have increasingly recognised both the roles that community initiatives and charities can make in improving wellbeing and the work that our growing number of colleagues initiate and undertake in their own communities.
The launch of the Care UK Wellbeing Foundation at the beginning of 2014 strengthened our investment in both national and local initiatives, and in the learning which they bring back to care services themselves.
The Foundation’s initial focus is on promoting wellbeing through the arts. We are investing more than £100,000 in charitable projects which promote wellbeing through the arts, structured as three tranches to ensure a balance between national, local and research based projects.
10 percent will go towards research that will benefit the health and wellbeing of the most vulnerable in society. We know that research helps to identify where resources are best focused to benefit this section of the population.
For example, in 2014 we launched a project to establish the positive effects of music therapy on our care home residents, particularly those with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. We’re supporting a partnership with one of the UK’s leading chamber orchestras, Manchester Camerata, to carry out a pilot scheme of the project, called Music in Mind. The project is initially being developed with residents and colleagues at Station House care home in Cheshire. We are working with Manchester University to evaluate the progress of participants and to use our findings to take practical steps across our organisation to improve the wellbeing of people living with dementia.
Each year 60 percent of the Foundation’s funds will support a national charity that relates to our chosen focus. The Foundation’s care experts, drawn from across the specialisms within Care UK, select a small number of candidate charities, then care home managers, hospital directors, mental health specialists, homecare managers and other care experts from across our organisations make a final decision on the award of funding.
In 2014 the Foundation is supporting Nordoff Robbins, the national music therapy charity. Our support will enable the charity to undertake more than 1,500 individual music therapy sessions with a diverse range of clients, including supporting those living with mental health conditions, learning disabilities or with a form of dementia.
Finally, 30 percent or our annual investment will go to small charities and community groups, and our colleagues and members of the public will be able to apply for funds for good causes in their area whose activities support our theme. Our care experts will decide on the most deserving causes and the Foundation will provide up to £2,000 to each group to help them with their activities. Our colleagues across the range of Care UK health and social care services already raise thousands of pounds for good causes every year, and we support their efforts by matching the funds raised.