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Gateshead Cares

Why the Gateshead health and care organisations came together

Gateshead boasts some of the best health and care services, but stubborn health inequalities persist across communities in Gateshead. We have layered resource on top of existing resource to respond to need in a siloed way - expensive and inefficient!

People have told us their experience of care is fragmented. Where our system has needed to be strongest (for example, for people with multiple and complex needs), it has often been the weakest.

Add workforce challenges and financial sustainability into the mix and we understood that we needed to work differently in order to deliver better outcomes for the people of Gateshead with less resource.

What the Gateshead Health and Care System is

The Gateshead Health and Care System (Gateshead Cares) is a group of local organisations that come together on a regular basis to work differently together in order to achieve better outcomes for local people. This includes:

  • Gateshead Council
  • NHS North East and North Cumbria integrated care board (ICB)
  • Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust
  • Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust
  • The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Community Based Care Health / Gateshead Federation of GP Practices
  • Voluntary and Community Sector (Connected Voice and Healthwatch Gateshead)

Our aims and objectives

Our aims and objectives are to:

  • shift the balance of services from acute hospital care and crisis interventions to community support with a focus on prevention, early help and self-help. As part of this, ensure that a shift in activity is accompanied by a shift in resource as appropriate i.e. that money follows the patient/service user;
  • support the development of integrated care and treatment for people;
  • create a joint planning and financial framework for managing the difficult decisions required to ensure effective, efficient and economically secure services during a period of continued public sector financial austerity, getting the most from the Gateshead Pound.

Helping people to Thrive in Gateshead

Our aims and objectives support all 5 pledges of Gateshead's Thrive agenda:

  • put people and families at the heart of what we do
  • tackle inequality so people have a fair chance
  • support our communities to support themselves and each other
  • invest in our economy to provide sustainable opportunities for employment, innovation and growth across the Borough
  • work together and fight for a better future for Gateshead

Our Health and Wellbeing Strategy

The overarching strategy for Gateshead Place is our Gateshead Health and Wellbeing Strategy 'Good jobs, homes, health and friends' which sets out where we need to focus our attention to reduce levels of inequality through altering the circumstances that lead to inequality. We want to make Gateshead a place where fewer people need direct support and more people are thriving. The six policy objectives of the strategy are:

  • give every child the best start in life
  • enable all children, young people and adults to maximise their capabilities and have control over their lives
  • create fair employment and good work for all
  • ensure a healthy standard of living for all
  • create and develop healthy and sustainable places and communities
  • strengthen the role and impact of ill health prevention

Our programme areas and enablers of integration

Gateshead System partners identified an initial set of work programme areas for inclusion within an Alliance Agreement for Gateshead Cares. These have been updated and further developed annually.  

  1. Children and Young Peoples' Best Start in Life
  2. Ageing Well: Adults and older people: Transformation of Home Care
  3. Ageing Well: Adults and older people: Transformation of Care Homes
  4. Ageing Well: Frailty (Prevention)
  5. Mental health transformation
  6. Multiple and complex needs (people@the heart)

Each programme area seeks to address health inequalities, prevention, integrating pathways and evaluating outcomes as part of its work.

These programme areas link with the priorities of the recently developed Gateshead Place Plan:

  • Priority 1 - Giving Children and Young People the Best Start in Life
  • Priority 2 - Better Health and Care Approach Services: developing Integrated Neighbourhood Teams
  • Priority 3 - Fairer Outcomes for All: highlighting the need to pursue a strategic system wide approach to tackle continuing inequalities
  • Priority 4 - Longer and Healthier Lives: Mental Health, Learning Disability, Autism, Ageing Well

Gateshead Cares has also updated and is taking forward programmes of work relating to the following 'enablers of integration':

  1. Workforce
  2. Digital Gateshead (including Digital Poverty)
  3. System Development: Primary Care Network Development
  4. Estates
  5. Data: Axym / Gateshead Outcomes Framework

These programmes of work also link with the enablers identified within the Gateshead Place Plan.

System leadership and development

We recognise the importance of collective system leadership across our organisations in taking forward our priority areas and transformation programmes. We also understand the need to continue to develop our local system and ways of working so that it is best placed to deliver our aspirations for local people. This is something we are taking forward in parallel with our work programmes.

Supporting documents

There are a number of key documents below which set out more information on the Gateshead Health and Care System for example our vision and priorities for local people; details of our work; our principles and ways of working; our governance; and how Gateshead 'Place' fits into wider geographies across our region and sub-region. 

Gateshead Place Plan (PDF) [363KB] (opens new window) (June 2023)

Gateshead Cares Governance and Overview (PDF) [254KB] (opens new window) (June 2023)

HWB Planning Session – Slide Pack (PDF) [2MB] (opens new window) (March 2023)

Gateshead Cares Programme Areas and Enablers (PDF) [387KB] (opens new window) (March 2023)

Gateshead Cares System Board: Update and Planning for the new health landscape (PDF) [815KB] (opens new window) (December 2021)

Report to Gateshead Council's Cabinet on an Alliance Agreement for the Gateshead Health and Care System (PDF) [337KB] (opens new window) (March 2021)

Local Government Association (LGA) Good Practice Case Study on Gateshead's collective leadership approach in responding to Covid-19 (PDF) [296KB] (opens new window)  (September 2020)

List of Gateshead Health and Care System Priority Workstreams and Enablers (PDF) [85KB] (opens new window)  (August 2020)

Slides for Integrated Care Partnership (North) (PDF) [219KB] (opens new window)  (June 2020)

Examples of Health and Care System responses to Covid-19' (PDF) [204KB] (opens new window)  (June 2020)

Gateshead Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2020 (PDF) [3MB] (opens new window)  (March 2020)

How does Gateshead fit into the wider system? (gi.ui.mediatype.powerpoint) [5MB] (opens new window)  (December 2019)

Update to our Health and Wellbeing Board (PDF) [540KB] (opens new window) (July 2019)

Gateshead Health and Care System Planning Framework (gi.ui.mediatype.powerpoint) [4MB] (opens new window) (July 2019)

Terms of Reference for Gateshead Health and Care System (PDF) [182KB] (opens new window) (April 2019)

Memorandum of Understanding for Gateshead Health and Care System (PDF) [173KB] (opens new window) (January 2019)

Principles for Planning and Financial Delivery (PDF) [113KB] (opens new window) (November 2018)

Update to our Health and Wellbeing Board (PDF) [677KB] (opens new window)  (October 2018)

Gateshead Health and Care System Outcomes Wheel (PDF) [158KB] (opens new window)  (June 2018)

Gateshead Health and Care System Report-out Slides (PDF) [4MB] (opens new window) (June 2018)

Updates to Gateshead Health and Wellbeing Board

March 2024 (PDF) [377KB] (opens new window)

January 2024 (PDF) [390KB] (opens new window)

December 2023 (PDF) [366KB] (opens new window)

October 2023 (PDF) [370KB] (opens new window)

September 2023 (PDF) [366KB] (opens new window)

July 2023 (PDF) [331KB] (opens new window)

June 2023 (PDF) [332KB] (opens new window)

April 2023 (PDF) [348KB] (opens new window)

January 2023 (PDF) [329KB] (opens new window)

December 2022 (PDF) [361KB] (opens new window)

October 2022 (PDF) [362KB] (opens new window)

September 2022 (PDF) [359KB] (opens new window)

July 2022 (PDF) [234KB] (opens new window)

June 2022 (PDF) [232KB] (opens new window)

April 2022 (PDF) [261KB] (opens new window)

March 2022 (PDF) [198KB] (opens new window)

January 2022 (PDF) [190KB] (opens new window)


For further information on the Gateshead Health and Care System, contact John Costello 0191 433 2065 or email