Health bosses share their vision for the future in South Tyneside

NHS chiefs have shared their ambitions to turn South Tyneside District Hospital into a centre for surgical excellence.

South Tyneside District Hospital
South Tyneside District Hospital

After months of work - led by local doctors, nurses and therapy staff from both Sunderland Royal and South Tyneside hospitals - Phase Two of the Trusts Path to Excellence programme, an ‘Updated Draft Case for Change’, has been published today.

Health bosses say it takes on board the views of over 9,000 staff, patients and key stakeholders, and the draft represents the early thinking and emerging ideas on ways to potentially solve the challenges facing the NHS services in the area for many generations to come.

Dr Shaz Wahid

One of the visions is to establish a centre of surgical excellence at the Harton Lane site in South Shields and improve clinical outcomes by doing planned operations operation in South Tyneside.

There are also hopes a new Integrated Diagnostic and Imaging Centre could also be created in the borough to help cope with the rising demand for test results and scans which is growing at 10% per year.

The trust also aims to ensure continued 24/7 access to urgent or emergency care in both South Tyneside and Sunderland and provide more care closer to peoples’ homes. In the past year, over 1,500 appointments have been delivered in South Tyneside, rather than Sunderland, for South Tyneside residents.

Dr Shaz Wahid, medical director at South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust and clinical lead for the Path to Excellence programme, said: “Our teams have been working hard over the past year and we have now reached a point where we are able to share our early thinking on how we might be able to solve some of the difficult challenges facing local hospital services.

“Our frontline staff see first-hand the impact of workforce pressures and growing demands. By working together across both hospitals to pool our expertise and resources, we know we can create much more resilience and offer much improved staff and patient experiences and clinical outcomes.

“Our teams have collectively set very high ambitions for the future and we now look forward to talking with staff, as well as with wider stakeholders, in the weeks ahead.”

He added: “Fundamental in achieving our future ambitions will be the level of capital investment available to us and whilst we do not have a definitive answer on this yet, we continue to push and explore all possible options to enable positive changes to take place.”

“Changes are needed so that both hospitals can work much more effectively together to serve both populations and achieve outstanding clinical excellence.

Engagement Events

Throughout March, NHS is seeking views on what is important to local people, and why, when accessing hospital care.

Drop-in roadshows will take place over the coming weeks as follows:

Friday 8 March 10am – 2pm Cleadon Park Primary Care Centre

Monday 11 March 9am – 5pm South Shields Market Place

Wednesday 13 March 10am – 2pm Hebburn Central

Thursday 14 March 10am – 2pm Flagg Court Primary Care

Wednesday 20 March 10am – 2pm Boldon Asda

Thursday 21 March 10am – 4pm Sunderland Asda

Monday 25 March 9am – 5pm South Shields High Street

Tuesday 26 March 10am – 2pm Alexander’s restaurant, South Tyneside District Hospital

Tuesday 26 March 9am – 5pm Jarrow Town Centre

Wednesday 27 March 9am – 5pm Hebburn Town Centre 

Wednesday 27 March 10am – 2pm South Shields Asda

Thursday 28 March 10am – 2pm Main Outpatients, Palmer Community Hospital 

An online survey and new video animation are also available online at for those who cannot attend a drop-in roadshow.