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Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Trust, which runs Carlton Court in Lowestoft, receives top industry award for work experience





A hospital trust has received a top industry award for the quality of its work experience.

Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust’s (NSFT) Talent for Care Team has received a gold quality award from Health Education England, which lasts for two years.

The awards were created to help healthcare organisations to quality assure their placements, with trusts required to demonstrate how the schemes they offer are planned, delivered and evaluated.

NSFT's Talent for Care team with their work experience quality award. Picture: NSFT
NSFT's Talent for Care team with their work experience quality award. Picture: NSFT

They also aim to ensure that learners are not disadvantaged because of their geographical location or organisational interpretation of work experience.

Elisha Gladwell, career facilitator at NSTF, said: “Before the award was achieved the NSFT work experience offer was extremely limited. In fact, we didn’t offer any placements during Covid, just virtual ones twice a year.

“Now we have had more than 40 applications already this year. Work experience is a crucial tool in developing our future workforce.”

Carlton Court, in Lowestoft, run by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, which has received a top industry award for the quality of its work experience. Picture: Google Maps
Carlton Court, in Lowestoft, run by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, which has received a top industry award for the quality of its work experience. Picture: Google Maps

Elisha said that NSFT is focused on the growth of the workforce through ‘pre-employment engagement’ so that the trust can attract the next generation of workers.

The trust runs a work experience induction as well as implementing a programme workbook. It also offers peer support whilst on placement and follow ups with students after their work experience to keep engagement until they leave school/college.

Elisha continued: “It was a huge task to collate all the evidence required to meet the criteria. Initially NHS England request a minimum of 12 pieces of evidence for the gold standard.

“I submitted over 50 documents for review to demonstrate our work and the work we have done with our work experience students.”

She said the team were ‘unbelievably proud’ of achieving the award, adding that the generosity of employees across the trust in accommodating and helping placement students was ‘golden’.

The quality standard criteria are broken down into six sections and each has multiple points that need to be adhered to and evidence in order to achieve the award.

Cath Byford, chief people officer and deputy CEO at NSFT, said: “This is a great achievement for the Talent for Care team.

“Work experience is an excellent way of introducing young people to the idea of working for the NHS and helps build for our future.”