A Northumberland MP and Councillor met with a local NHS Chief Executive to discuss mental health and disability services in the region.
Guy Opperman, Conservative MP for Hexham, and Councillor Gordon Stewart met with Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust (CNTW)’s new Chief Executive James Duncan last week.
The group met at Ferndene in Prudhoe, part of CNTW’s Children and Young People’s Services, and covered a number of topics including the Trust priorities for the future.
Ferndene is part of the Trust’s Care Environment Development and Re-Provision (CEDAR) programme, designed to provide state-of-the-art mental health and learning disability hospital services for people locally and across the region.
CEDAR aims to increase patient and staff safety and improve the quality of care, radically improving and replacing key elements of the Trust’s building estate to create centres of excellence for inpatient care for young people and adults with mental health and learning disability needs.
The programme comprises of three major developments, one of which is the reconfiguration of Ferndene to improve existing accommodation and establish medium-secure facilities.
James Duncan took up the role of Chief Executive on 1 February 2022, having held the post of Executive Director of Finance and Deputy Chief Executive at the Trust since 2006.
On his meeting with Guy Opperman MP and Councillor Gordon Stewart, James said: “It was a great opportunity to meet, and I hope to continue meeting with local communities to advocate for people with addictions, gender diversity needs, learning disabilities, mental health needs, neurological disabilities and neurodiversity.
“It’s incredibly important to know what’s going on in the local communities of the areas we serve, and I look forward to continuing to work closely with Guy, Gordon and others now and in the future.”
Guy Opperman MP said: “Mental health awareness matters. It was important to visit Ferndene to discuss all aspects of NHS mental health provision and to meet with James Duncan, the new Chief Executive.”
County Cllr Gordon Stewart, who represents Prudhoe South and is the Deputy Cabinet member for community services, said: “Our discussions included the current major investment into the hospital, local community cohesion and a range of employment opportunities available.”