Citizens Juries Community Interest Company appointed to run an independent citizens’ jury, to consid…

Following the decision of NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group and Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust to approve the recommendation to invest in a new community hospital in the Forest of...

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Gloucestershire NHS apprentices best in the South West

Three Gloucestershire NHS apprentices were awarded for their commitment and service to the NHS at a special regional awards ceremony. Jess Carmen, Meg Cooke and Amanda Spencer, from Gloucestershire Care Services...

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Congratulations to seven Healthcare Assistants (HCAs) from Stroud General and the Vale Community Hospitals, who have recently been awarded Care Certificates. Stroud Vale HCAs

The group have been part of a 12 week training and development programme, learning the skills and behaviours to provide compassionate, safe and quality care. The Certificate is awarded to those in healthcare roles who have demonstrated they meet each of the 15 Care Certificate standards, including caring with privacy and dignity, awareness of mental health (including dementia and learning difficulties), safeguarding and infection control. 

The group received their certificates and badges from Sue Field, Director of Nursing, in the post-graduate room at Stroud General Hospital. Sue said “The Certificate marks the start of something new, and I know our HCAs are really making a positive difference on the wards with their colleagues and especially with patient care.”

Pauline Cox, Training and Development Facilitator (Stroud) and Julie Lerigo, Training and Development Sister (the Vale) have provided support and advice along the way. Julie said: “We feel extremely lucky to work with such wonderful HCAs, it has been wonderful to watch them develop and grow.” 

Some of the HCAs will now go on to do their nurse training, apply for a Nursing Associate role, or start an apprenticeship.

Jess, HCA at the Vale, said “The Care Certificate has strengthened our confidence in our roles, and I think we provide better care for patients because of it”.

Health Care Assistants who completed their Care Certificate are:  

  • Uta Baldauf
  • Jessica Fisher
  • Cidalia Goncalves
  • Teresa Harrison
  • Donna Hawker
  • Lauren Hayward
  • Lorna Mankee


27 October 2017

The Gloucestershire Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC) has been awarded the Police Commander's Commendation for Excellence by Gloucestershire Police.  SARC

This is in recognition of the team’s continued support and assistance to victims of sexual offences and for the crucial part they play in safeguarding victims and assisting the police in bringing perpetrators to justice. 

Magdalena Gulcz-Hayward, SARC Manager, was also awarded for her assistance and support of a vulnerable victim of a serious sexual offence. The victim would not initially engage with the police, however Magdalena spent over five hours supporting and reassuring the victim, allowing to her to provide a video interview. 

Magdalena said “I work with incredible women who are kind, caring and considerate and always put their clients’ needs first. We are very proud to be providing an empowering, client led service.’

The service is jointly provided by the Trust and Gloucestershire Constabulary. To find out more about SARC, click here.


25 October 2017


North Cotswolds HospitalHospital Ward Volunteers

Do you enjoy talking to people, listening to music, reading newspapers and/or supporting people through befriending activities? Have some spare time and want to put this to good use? We would love you to spend time with patients on the hospital ward. Help at lunchtimes is particularly valuable but we appreciate any time you can give us.

Gardening Club Volunteers

Do you enjoy gardening or being outside? Would you like to meet new friends or get more exercise? We are starting a new Gardening Club at the hospital and need volunteers to help. Everybody is welcome, from keen gardeners to beginners.

Want to know more?

We are holding an open day at North Cotswolds Hospital on Tuesday 31 October from 10am to 12pm for anyone interested in helping at the hospital. We will discuss our volunteer roles with you in more detail and help find a role to suit your interests.

Please do come along and meet some of the team involved in this valuable and rewarding work and talk through any queries you may have over a cup of tea.

For more information about volunteering at the hospital, please call Angie Pinchin on 0300 421 8799 or email  


25 October 2017


Two Trust teams have been recognised for their work on SystmOne at the first ever SystmOne Innovation Awards. 

Time to Care, a Listening into Action (LiA) team, won the Workforce Experience Award for designing and implementing a RAG (Red Amber Green) capacity tool for Integrated Community Teams (ICTs). The tool helps clinicians to see how much time the patient should be ledgered for to ensure they provide high quality care (which can include administering medication, undertaking assessments, undertaking therapy intervention). Every new patient starts on red until they have been assessed, and if they stabilise or improve they move through to amber and green. 

The Musculoskeletal physiotherapy team were runners up in the User Interface Design category. The team created a single point of access for referrals on SystmOne which are managed by administrative and clinical colleagues from across the whole service. This system ensures consistency and equity, preventing any delays to registration and triage and building resilience into the service. The team have considerably increased their use of texts and emails to service users through SystmOne, providing a greater level of cost effective communication than printed letters. 

Dawn Allen, Professional Head of Community Nursing & Head of Tissue Viability and Complex Leg Wound Services, said: "This award recognises the combined and committed multi-professional LiA group who worked tirelessly in drawing together the RAG tool and sharing it out to their colleagues in the ICTs, in particular the Professional Leads who helped inform the data collection and tool development so proficiently. The tool is a clinically led, quality focused enabler for services and forms a part of future capacity management approaches." 

Sarah Morton, Professional Head of Adult Physiotherapy, said “Both submissions demonstrated the strength of collaborative working between clinical systems, information analysists, IT teams and clinical colleagues and it was a great testament to everyone’s efforts.”


12 October 2017



Board Headshots I Barker 4 IB Pref midsizeA joint Chair has been appointed following last month’s announcement that 2gether NHS Foundation Trust and Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust are working on proposals to  integrate as a single organisation.

Ingrid Barker was chosen following a formal selection process, which included a series of discussion groups involving a broad range of clinical and non-clinical representatives from both Trusts, as well as patients, service users and carers.

The discussion groups were then followed by a formal interview with members of 2gether’s Council of Governors alongside independent advisors. Their decision has also been ratified by the full Council of Governors as the appointing body.

Ingrid will take up her position from January 2018, after which a business case will be developed with a view to formally joining the two organisations from October 2018.

Ingrid said: “I am delighted to have been selected as Joint Chair of two Trusts who are providing such high quality services to the people of Gloucestershire and Herefordshire. The coming months and years will be momentous, as we work to combine our experience, expertise and resources, in order to enhance the services we provide to our local communities. I look forward to working with colleagues across both organisations, together with our many partners, as we progress our proposals.”

2gether’s Lead Governor, Rob Blagden, said: “This is an exciting time for 2gether and Gloucestershire Care Services, and selecting the right candidate for the position of Joint Chair was extremely important. Our Council was clear that we would only appoint if our candidate was the best person to lead us in the months and years ahead, and we are confident that Ingrid is fitting for the role. Ingrid brings a wealth of local knowledge and experience combined with a passion to improve health outcomes for our patients.”

Nikki Richardson, Senior Independent Director for 2gether, added: “I would like to congratulate Ingrid, who has a huge amount of experience, both locally and nationally within the NHS. Her strong leadership will be vital as we progress our plans for integrating mental health, learning disability and physical health services, and work together to make services more seamless for our communities.”

Ingrid Barker is currently Chair of Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust – a position she has held since April 2011. She was previously a Non Executive Director on the Board of NHS Gloucestershire for five years. She is a Trustee and board member for NHS Providers, elected to represent the Community Trusts across the country. Ingrid has undertaken national policy and service development roles through the Centre for Mental Health Services Development.  She was Deputy Chief Executive of an NHS Trust in Surrey and led Croydon Mental Health Unit as Unit General Manager, transforming institutional services to community provision.  A qualified social worker, Ingrid established a service for young homeless people in Central London and was Regional Director of MIND.  She also led the creation of the first mental health Patients Councils and Advocacy projects in Britain.

She has lived in Gloucestershire with her family since 2002 and during that time has served as Chair and as a Governor for Ribston Hall High School in Gloucester. She is currently a Governor of Hartpury College.

2gether and Gloucestershire Care Services announced plans to appoint a Joint Chair and Joint Chief Executive last month. The position of Joint Chair was ring fenced to the sitting Chairs of both Trusts. Ruth FitzJohn, who is currently Chair of 2gether, announced her decision to retire at the end of 2017 earlier this year.

Selection of the Joint Chief Executive will take place during November and the Joint Chief Executive will also take up position in January 2018.

A full programme of engagement will then begin with staff and partners about the next steps. Both Trusts will remain separate legal entities with independent Boards until a full business case is completed and necessary approvals are received.



The Trust held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Wednesday 27 September at Oxstalls Campus, University of Gloucestershire. We were pleased to welcome over 100 members of the public, stakeholders, partner organisations and colleagues to the event, with over 60 people attending the formal AGM.

The exhibition focused on the range of community-based services we provide, including our Integrated Community Teams (ICTs), Chat Health (our new text messaging service for 11-19 year olds), and our partnership with Macmillan to deliver the Next Steps Cancer Rehabilitation service.

Attendees also had the opportunity to view a model ward which will be used for student training, as part of the University of Gloucestershire’s brand new innovative nursing degrees, launching this autumn. As a key partner for the new degree programme, we are looking forward to working alongside nursing undergraduates to help them develop the skills and adaptability to deliver high quality patient care.

The formal AGM session included a summary of our key achievements over the last 12 months via a short video featuring Katie Norton, Chief Executive and colleagues from across the Trust. We also heard presentations from a number of service areas including a collaborative approach to improving the Children’s End of Life Care Pathway, and how our Allied Health Professionals will be delivering against the four impacts of the AHP National Strategy.


6 October 2017 


Volunteers and staff at Cirencester Hospital sarcophagusA stone sarcophagus, found in the grounds of Cirencester Hospital, is now on permanent display thanks to the hard work of local volunteers and community groups. 

The sarcophagus, which dates back to Roman times, was uncovered during the building of a new hospital wing in the 1970s. It was kept outside the physiotherapy department until the decision was made to put it on public display in the hospital grounds.  

The hospital’s Green Gym volunteers applied for funding from St James’ Place to arrange moving the sarcophagus outside, and then built a wooden shelter to protect it from the elements.

Andre Curtis, grounds consultant for Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust, said: “It’s been such a collaborative project – the hospital volunteers have worked with apprentices from St James’ Place to build the shelter, the Barnwood Trust helped with purchase of the timber, and Cirencester Town Council and the Corinium Museum have both contributed towards an information plaque.

It’s taken two years to complete this project, and we are thrilled to see the sarcophagus on public display.”

Matron Linda Edwards said “I’m delighted that this historical artefact is now on display for everyone to enjoy. This has been down the work of our wonderful volunteers and contributions from many local Cirencester organisations, who we cannot thank enough." 

There are a further five sarcophagi in store at the museum, uncovered by the Cirencester Excavation Committee in 1969, and various others were uncovered in the 19th and early  20th centuries.

James Harris, Collections Officer at Cirencester Corinium Museum, said "The work by the gardeners represents the great local interest in and real care of our Roman heritage. The shelter will make a genuine difference to the longevity of the sarcophagus."


22 September 2017 

The two NHS Trusts providing community-based physical and mental health services in Gloucestershire are to join together under the leadership of one Chair and one Chief Executive.

2gether NHS Foundation Trust (2g) and Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust (GCS) will jointly appoint the new leaders later this year.

The joint Chair and Chief Executive will then set plans in motion to bring the two organisations together, with the aim of providing seamless mental and physical health services to patients, service users and carers.

The Trusts’ current Chief Executives, Shaun Clee (2gether) and Katie Norton (GCS), said: “We collectively employ more than 5,000 people, providing high quality healthcare services to people with physical and mental health conditions across Gloucestershire, and in 2gether’s case Herefordshire as well.

“The vast majority of our work is delivered in the community, but we also provide services from inpatient units, such as our community hospitals and specialist mental health units.

“It has become increasingly clear, both locally and nationally, that ‘there is no health without mental health’ and that a combined provider of mental and physical services could benefit many of the people we separately support.”

Chairs Ruth FitzJohn (2gether) and Ingrid Barker (GCS) added: “We believe that an integrated approach will further improve the experience and outcomes our patients and service users receive. It will also enable us to offer a better service to our healthcare partners – such as GPs and the acute hospitals – as well as other statutory and voluntary agencies.

“This will also be beneficial for everyone who works for both organisations. Combining our collective resources, knowledge, innovation and expertise, will enable us to provide a broader career path and open up new ways of working, which we hope will benefit our colleagues as well as our communities.”

Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr Amjad Uppal, of 2gether NHS Foundation Trust, said: “There is a growing base of clinical evidence that mental and physical health care should become more integrated. We now know that treating and supporting the ‘whole person’ can aid prevention, improve recovery, increase life expectancies and generally enhance our overall wellbeing. Combining our clinical expertise and care pathways will, we believe, benefit everyone in our communities.”

Sue Field, Director of Nursing at GCS, said: “Our nurses and allied health professionals working in community health services know well the impact long term physical health conditions can have on people’s mental health.  I am excited about the opportunity we now have to improve the way we work together to better meet the physical, psychological  and social needs of people.”

The new Joint Chair and CEO will be appointed by the end of November, and will take up post in January 2018. Consultation will then begin with staff and partners about the next steps. Both Trusts will remain separate legal entities with independent Boards until a full business case is completed and necessary approvals are received.

Staff within both organisations have been informed, and will be continuously updated in the weeks and months to come.

Further announcements will follow in due course.

20 September 2017