Teesside University’s National Horizons Centre (NHC) hosted the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak as he unveiled plans to relieve pressure on the NHS.
The NHC was the venue as the Prime Minister outlined a new Urgent and Emergency Care Plan in his latest PM Connect session.
The plan includes thousands more hospital beds, 800 new ambulances and the opening up of ‘virtual wards’ which will see frail and elderly patients, as well as those with respiratory conditions, treated in the home.
The use of video technology and wearable devices to monitor patients will be central to the new plans, with officials saying that up to 20% of hospital admissions are avoidable with the right care in place.
During his visit to the NHC, the Prime Minister toured the facilities and met with student nurses and paramedics from Teesside University’s School of Health & Life Sciences.
He also took time to hear about the industry-focussed research taking place at the NHC – including the utilisation of ground-breaking technology to diagnose and detect cancer cells and the development of innovative medical diagnostic equipment – praising the commercial application of this work.
The plans unveiled by the Prime Minister link well with Teesside University’s strengths and ambitions around community-focussed and integrated healthcare, as well as the use of innovative technologies and practices emanating from the research at the NHC.
Teesside University has also recently launched its Integrated Care Academy which creates a multidisciplinary framework to more effectively engage with stakeholders.
In addition, BIOS, a brand new £36.9m health and medical facility, is currently in development at the University’s Middlesbrough campus and will provide specialist facilities for the sciences and clinical subjects.
Reflecting on the Prime Minister’s visit to the NHC, Professor Paul Croney, OBE, Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive of Teesside University, said: “We were delighted to welcome the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to our National Horizons Centre and have the opportunity to brief him about the ground-breaking research, partnerships and training that form the basis of this national centre of excellence.
We were delighted to welcome the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to our National Horizons Centre and have the opportunity to brief him about the ground-breaking research, partnerships and training that form the basis of this national centre of excellence.
“It was also fitting that he was able to hear directly from our students in the School of Health & Life Sciences, as they are the future of our healthcare system.
“As a University, we are supportive of the new Urgent and Emergency Care plan as it aligns well with our strengths and ambitions around community-focussed and integrated healthcare, as well as our applied research and use of innovative technologies and practices.”
Professor Tim Thompson, Dean of the School of Health & Life Sciences, added: “The visit of the Prime Minister was an excellent opportunity to showcase the work of Teesside University, which is helping to modernise the NHS and build capacity through the development of a future facing NHS workforce. Education is integral to this modernisation and Teesside University is ready to play its part in supporting these developments.”
The National Horizons Centre is Teesside University's £22.3m centre of excellence for the biosciences and healthcare sector. It brings together industry, academia, talent and world-class facilities to create real-world impact.
Since it opened in 2019, the NHC has been at the forefront of the Tees Valley’s drive to establish itself as a global biosciences hub.
Working at the interface between industry and academia, the NHC combines research expertise and world-class facilities with detailed sector knowledge to ensure that the training and development needs of the bioscience and health sectors are fully equipped to meet future demand.
Professor Vikki Rand, Director of the National Horizons Centre, commented: “We welcomed the opportunity to discuss translational, patient-centred work taking place at the NHC with the Prime Minister, and to demonstrate how our focus on improving health outcomes is having an impact for the communities we serve.”
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