Collaboration is keeping our communities healthy

Newcastle City Council and Newcastle University’s School of Pharmacy have united to create the Young@Heart clinic – a partnership project which offers student-led health checks for the local community.

The drop-in clinic is located within the Grainger Market and is open to members of the local community between 9am and 3pm (term time) on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Under supervision from a clinical lead, pharmacy students provide free health checks, such as blood pressure, glucose levels and cholesterol checks. They also offer health and lifestyle advice based on the results and, if needed, signpost people to further support services.

The Young@Heart clinic is an innovative approach to student learning that offers invaluable experience to the next generation of Pharmacists studying at Newcastle University.  Students provide this service as part of their work-based placements in the undergraduate pharmacy program, which supports their training and also helps them to build the skills they will need to advise members of the public before they graduate.

It has been so successful that the team are looking to take the Young@Heart clinic model elsewhere. Students have been working with the St Vincent’s Centre to offer these health checks to homeless people in the city. Discussions are also currently in place to have a health check bus, working alongside the Newcastle GP Services (NGPS).

Dr Hamde Nazar, Director of Education and Senior Lecturer in Pharmacy Practice, at Newcastle University, said: “This initiative is a pleasure to manage and grow. Working with other organisations to facilitate these experiences for the students is invaluable. The best part however is engaging with diverse populations, many of whom are not accessing conventional health services for a variety of reasons. The conversations about health and wellbeing with these populations have been an eye-opening experience for students and the opportunity to contribute to their care, even in a small way, is a privilege.”

Cllr Karen Kilgour, Deputy leader and Cabinet member for a Healthy, Caring City, Newcastle City Council said: “This is a great example of collaboration with partners in the city, supporting our residents to access services and to be as happy and healthy as possible. I am delighted by the success of the Young@Heart clinic. I am proud we are supporting Newcastle Pharmacy students with this invaluable experience, and providing people in the city with an additional resource for health advice.”

Newcastle City Council and Newcastle University are part of Newcastle Health Innovation Partners (NHIP), the name given to our regional Academic Health Science Centre (AHSC). NHIP brings together partners to deliver excellence in research, health education and patient care.

You can also find out more about the service with this video: Young@Heart Clinic | Newcastle University School of Pharmacy – YouTube


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