CARE programme

CARE (Connected, Authentic, Resilient, Empowered) is a learning and development programme that empowers general practice nurses and other primary care professionals to play a key role in their primary care network, to shape services based on population health needs and to strengthen their leadership. Focusing on wellbeing and building and harnessing resilience, the programme uses digital technology to connect primary care professionals and to support joined-up, multi-professional working.

CARE programme needs you

We are seeking expressions of interest from general practice nurses (GPNs) in Greater Manchester who want to be part of a new, innovative and ground-breaking national development programme, shaped and delivered locally by GM GPNs for GM GPNs.

Please see an example of one of the GP Nurses projects as a result of the CARE Programme who has published a blog on NHS England blog is now live – Excellent patients outcome!

*CARE Programme has now CLOSED for applications*

Watch the video of the CARE Programme launch event held on 26th March 2021.

Important dates for the CARE Programme

  • Training cohort 1: 31st March 2021 – 25th May 2021
  • Training cohort 2: 1st June 2021 – 14th July 2021
  • Training cohort 3: 23rd June – 11th August 2021
  • Evaluation event: 18th November 2021 (Worsley Park Marriott Hotel & Country Club TBC)

Download CARE Programme documentation

Greater Manchester GPNs will be supported and work in partnership with National Association of Primary Care (NAPC), the General Practice Nursing 10 Point Plan team at NHS England and NHS Improvement, Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes (BLMK) ICS and specialist coaches ShinyMind.

CARE’s practical and person-cantered approach has already led to more joined-up working in primary care networks in BLMK, bringing together a range of health and social care professionals as a complete care community. This is not only helping with immediate acute care need but is also supporting patients whose long-term conditions are likely to deteriorate during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Videos about the CARE programme


In the video below Dr Johnny Marshall, President, NAPC, outlines the core elements of the CARE programme.


Joanna Bircher is a GP and the Clinical Director of GM GP Excellence Programme and Clinical Director of the GM CARE Programme. Joanna Qualified as a doctor in 1993 and has been a Greater Manchester GP partner for 22 years at Lockside Medical Centre, Stalybridge.

In the video below Joanna explains why the CARE Programme is an exciting leadership development opportunity for nurses in primary care and how the CARE Programme will support robust and sustainable services for the future through quality nursing leadership.

Lesley Royle-Pryors is the Greater Manchester Primary and Community Nurse Lead for Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership.

In the video below, Lesley shows great enthusiasm and excitement at the opportunity to develop our General Practice Nurses and give them the skills and tools they need to be the best leaders they can be!

Vicky Tolliday, Clinical Director RDP Clinical Network Director of Innovation and Business Development & ANP, Robert Darbishire Practice Limited, Rusholme Health Centre.

In the video below, Vicky shows great passion as a Clinical Lead and encourages nursing colleagues to apply for the course and develop ‘themselves’ as leaders to influence local systems and population health.

Gilly Lee has been a nurse for over 30 years working in large acute hospitals and community services.  She has held various nursing positions in the United Kingdom and New Zealand.  Roles including, Ward Manager, Team Manager, Assistant Director of Nursing, Advanced Practitioner & Professional Lead for Case Management; her current role is Neighbourhood Lead working in Community Services. 

Gilly is a ‘Queens Nurse’ is extremely proud to be a nurse, and believes that inclusive cultures are key to quality care and outcomes.  She is a founding member of her trust Chief Nurse BME advisory group, the regional lead for the Chief Nursing Officer BME advisory group, and a member of the national programme for Workforce Race Equality Standard Strategic Advisory Group.

In the video below Gilly explains how the CARE Programme will support BME staff.

SUCCESS Read about one of our successful candidates from our first cohort, Carol Jarvis and the continuing work on her project to create a beautiful garden at her surgery for positive mental health and wellbeing for patients:

Carole’s thoughts on the project.

I’ve been on the care excellence programme since the beginning of April.  Nurses are often at the forefront of change, and sometimes in Primary Care we are not given the opportunity to make those changes.  I’m sure there are lots of nurses who look at how things are done and want to make those changes but don’t know how, or can’t get your ideas heard.  This programme will give you the skills, time and support to do so, and put them into practice. It will help identify gaps in care , and at new ways of improving care. 

This Programme will allow you to put all those innovative ideas which you feel would benefit your patients into practice.  The course puts you in contact with other professionals to help make those changes. Primary care can be a bit lonely at times, and this allows you to network with other nurses and you can all share ideas.  It’s a very warm and safe environment where everyone is encouraged to listen and encouraged to express their idea.  You get an abundance of support from those within the group and you’re never on your own.  

The common aim is that we all have a passion to provide the best care we care to our patients, and make that care available to everyone. That may include using texting, social media or apps. 

My project is to have a community garden, to fit in with the 5 steps to a healthy mind. Which is to give, connect, take notice, learn, and be active. Covid has left people lonely and isolated, so I’m trying to bring all ages of the community together.  Not only that it has brought people at work together and motivated to help.  With the main aim to reduce GP appointments by improving mental and physical health. 

I’m using the local community to aid with the project from keen gardeners within the community, the Patient Participation Group, involving the local sheltered accommodations which are next door to the practice and the local garden centre which does a lot for people with learning difficulties. 

The key note is to start small and to expand as you learn what works and what doesn’t, and even if you have helped one patient, it’s been a success. 

And a short paragraph from another candidate:

I have found the CARE programme to be invaluable. It has helped us to form bonds and create a support network across different networks. The projects are inspirational, and it has been very insightful hearing how practices are improving their populations’ health. It is very empowering to work alongside current Nurse Leaders and Leaders in the making! 

Information for potential participants

Information for Primary Care Networks and system leaders

ShinyMind app

A key element of the support package is a wellbeing and resilience app – developed by ShinyMind with the NHS – that supports staff with their own health and to connect with others across the system. The app allows teams to connect with one another quickly and easily and create a positive and compassionate community of support. Read more about the ShinyMind app at

Download the ShinyMind app from Apple appstore | Google Play.