All posts by Mary McAuley

Be Proud, Be part of it

Apply for exciting opportunities in Antrim Area Hospital

Welcome to the recruitment page for jobs in Antrim Area Hospital

Apply for exciting opportunities in new innovative wards

Thank you for your interest in applying for a job in TeamNORTH.

This is a wonderful opportunity to be employed by the Northern Health and Social Care Trust.

We have a variety of jobs in all areas – all available now.

  • Medical
  • Nursing
  • Pharmacy
  • Allied Health Professions
  • Support Services
  • Administration

We are creating exciting new opportunities as we develop Stroke and Frailty services and Acute Medical Wards.

All the roles are permanent, full and part-time with many opportunities to develop your skills and career development.

We offer flexible working opportunities plus a wide range of benefits and rewards.

Are you ready for a new challenge and to join more than just a team?

Get ready to say YES to Team North, visit today.

Specific Job Listings

Higher Clerical Officer (Band 3)
Senior Nursing Assistant – Phlebotomist (Band 3)
Advanced Nurse Practitioner (Band 8A)
Assistant Director Medicine and Emergency Medicine & Urgent Assessment Pathways (Band8C)
Staff Nurse (Band 5)
Ward Sister/Charge Nurse Support Officer (Band 3).
Deputy Ward Sister/Deputy Charge Nurse (Band 6).
Nursing Assistant (Band 2).
Regional Physiotherapy Waiting List (Band 5).
Catering Supervisor (Band 3).

Further information

If you have any queries regarding any of the jobs, please contact Carol Catherwood – Email:

Team North - more than just a workplace





Industrial Action 2023

The Trust will continue to work with Trade Unions to try to minimise the impact of Industrial Action on patients and service users.

Information to advise of any potential disruption will be provided here and updated regularly. We will also post relevant Information on Trust social media channels.  Please note that if you have a pre-booked appointment you should attend unless we contact you to say that it has been cancelled.

Current Planned Industrial Action – March 2023

UNITE – It is our understanding that industrial action will take place on Thursday 16 March 2023.

NIPSA, UNISON and GMB – will continue to take Action Short of Strike.

The message to patients and service users remains that they should attend any planned appointments unless contacted by the Trust to advise otherwise.



















Celebrating the impact of Allied Health Professionals on the lives of people in the Northern Trust area

Blog by Jill Bradley

Assistant Director, Allied Health Professions (AHPs), Northern Health and Social Care Trust

Let’s celebrate International AHPs Day! 

Friday 14 October is Allied Health Professions Day –  a unique opportunity to celebrate the skills of Allied Health Professionals who support the health and wellbeing of people living in the Northern Health and Social Care Trust area, from Newtownabbey to Ballycastle, Coleraine to Cookstown and everywhere in-between.

Allied Health Professionals work as part of multidisciplinary teams and with local partners; councils, schools, care homes, hospitals, voluntary agencies and many more to tackle health inequalities.

In the Northern Trust;

  • Dietitians are addressing health inequalities of communities in Ballymena by running healthy eating courses and practical cooking sessions promoting cooking from scratch, healthy changes to diet and a reduction in take away foods Slow Cooking For Communities.
  • Occupational Therapists in partnership with Ulster University are leading innovation in the treatment of upper limb impairments following stroke.
  • Orthoptist clinics are supporting specialist assessment of visual problems, eye movement disorders, squints and double vision.
  • Paramedic students are welcomed by AHPs and other professions in various settings across the Trust to complete practice based learning.
  • First Contact Physiotherapists are working in local GP Practices to help people manage pain, disability and injury.
  • Podiatry clinics are delivered locally in a large number of towns to meet the needs of local people including those with diabetes.
  • Radiographers are providing diagnostic services and supporting flow through emergency departments.
  • Speech and Language Therapists are working in partnership with nurses, dietitians and other professionals to develop and implement Food and Drink Safety Pause in care settings before meal times, to promote awareness of people at risk from eating, drinking and swallowing difficulties.  This work has been up-scaled regionally.

These initiatives demonstrate the impact AHPs have on the health and wellbeing of people in our local area.  AHPs help people to manage complex health conditions, support return to school or work and live independently at home. They are leaders in public health and take a population level approach to address the care needs of people living in the Northern Health and Social Care Trust.

So today, a big shout out to celebrate AHP Support Workers, Dietitians, Occupational Therapists, Orthoptists, Podiatrists, Physiotherapists, Radiographers, Speech and Language Therapists and Paramedics who work across the area.

Happy AHPs Day!

#AHPsDay  #WeAHPs

Butterfly Remembrance walls at Antrim and Causeway Hospitals

During Baby Loss Awareness Week (9-15 Oct), we are hosting Butterfly Remembrance walls at Antrim and Causeway Hospitals, where you can come along and place a butterfly to remember your baby or child.

The wall at Antrim Area Hospital (outside the old emergency department) will open on Monday 10 October (from 11am-12 noon) and Thursday 13 October (from 3-4pm and 6-7pm).

The Butterfly Remembrance Wall at Causeway Hospital (outside the main entrance) will open on Monday 10 October (from 3-4pm), Tuesday 11 October (11am-12noon) and Wednesday 12 October  (7-8pm).

Rathmena House staff with Jubie John, NHSCT

Falls Pathway benefits nursing and residential care home residents

A new Wellness Pathway for people living in nursing and residential care homes has shown significant benefits in the area of resident falls.

Tested as part of the regional Enhancing Clinical Care Framework (ECCF) project, the Pathway has provided the tools and resources to enable care home staff to support residents who are at high risk of falls, managing their care within homes.

Rathmena House in Ballyclare is one of a number of care homes in Northern Ireland which has tested the Pathway.  This work is being led by the Department of Health and is supported by the Northern Trust’s Reach Team (Responsive Education, Support and Anticipatory Care to Care Homes), in collaboration with staff within the home.

After commencement of the Falls Pathway, Rathmena House has had no resident falls in the months of July and August 2022.  There has been an increase in staff awareness and a more holistic approach to the care of residents with the potential to fall.  The Pathway has also resulted in timely assessment and intervention by General Practitioners, multidisciplinary team and Allied Health Professionals and better rehabilitation opportunities for residents.  In addition, Reminiscence Interactive Therapy and Activities are provided to help provide therapeutic engagement and meaningful activity for residents.

The Testing phase is now complete however due to the benefits of the Falls Pathway outcomes the care home continues to use the Falls Pathway tools and resources.

Speaking about its success, Elizabeth Graham, Assistant Director of Nursing with the Northern Trust said:

“The Falls Pathway is just one of many resources currently being tested across a range of care home settings in NI as part of the regional Department of Health plan to coproduce a new framework for enhancing clinical care for residents in care homes, working in partnership with the Independent Sector.

“The aim of the Enhancing Clinical Care Framework (ECCF) project is to ensure that people who live in care homes are supported to lead the best life possible and that their right to access equitable healthcare provision is upheld.”

Neonatal Staff celebrating the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Award

Antrim Neonatal Unit receives nationally recognised mark of quality care

Antrim Area Hospital Neonatal Unit has become the first neonatal unit in Northern Ireland to receive full Baby Friendly accreditation by UNICEF.

The Team at the unit has worked towards Baby Friendly accreditation since 2017.  Following funding by the Public Health Agency for breastfeeding lead roles in neonatal units, they gained the knowledge and skills to implement the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative Neonatal specific standards.

The Team implemented simple but effective measures including:

  • comfortable recliner chairs for use by breastfeeding mothers
  • Breast pumps for each cot space
  • More privacy screens to encourage mothers to pump beside the cot
  • Meal vouchers for parents to have a hot meal each day
  • Small fridges in each nursery for mothers to manage their own breastmilk supply
  • Car parking tickets to enable free car parking on the Antrim Hospital site
  • A hydration station for parents and staff to drink water/juice throughout the day
  • Coat hangers for parents to feel at home and have somewhere to hang their belongings
  • A baby library to encourage parents to take a book and read to their baby
  • Promotion of breastmilk while supporting all choices/methods of feeding

The Neonatal Unit also offered access to both parents and grandparents, however temporary changes were necessary due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Supporting families to breastfeed and increasing the number of babies who are breastfed offers the best possible start in life.  This improves infant health and provides health benefits for mothers.  Neonatal staff involve parents as true partners in care; they encourage relationship building, support breast milk use and the transition to breastfeeding.

Ruth McKinstry, Breastfeeding Lead Nurse, Neonatal Unit, Antrim Area Hospital, said,

“We are absolutely delighted to receive the Baby Friendly Accreditation.

“This work has helped both staff and parents to focus on family-centred care, ensuring families stay together at a most vulnerable time, surrounded by a supportive and welcoming environment and team.

“Breastmilk provides the unique nourishment required to meet babies nutritional needs, it helps fight infection, stimulates gut growth, aids digestion and research has also shown it can have an analgesic effect which is important for preterm and sick babies.”

Yvonne Palmer’s baby was born at just over 31 weeks.  She said,

“I decided to breastfeed because it was the one thing I could do while the nurses and doctors helped with the other care.

“No one else can make the same tailor-made milk as my body can, which helps to build and grow my baby.”

The Northern Trust Maternity Service was accredited as a Gold Baby Friendly Service in May 2018. This good work has continued with the Neonatal Unit now achieving the UNICEF UK Baby Friendly Initiative Neonatal specific standards.

Additional Information

  • There is extensive evidence that breastfeeding saves lives, improves health and cuts costs.  In infant health, breastfeeding protects children from a vast range of illnesses, including infection, diabetes, asthma, heart disease and obesity, as well as cot death (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).  There are also maternal health benefits.  Breastfeeding protects mothers from breast and ovarian cancers and heart disease.  It also supports the mother-baby relationship and the mental health of both baby and mother. (UNICEF)
  • Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended by the World Health Organisation for babies until six months’ old and thereafter with other foods for two years and beyond.
  • In the UK, many mothers stop breastfeeding before they want to. The Baby Friendly Initiative responds to particular barriers they face by supporting health professionals to provide sensitive and effective care so that mothers can make an informed choice about feeding, get breastfeeding off to a good start and overcome any challenges.
  • More information about Baby Friendly Standards for Neonatal Units:
  • Baby Friendly Accreditation statistics and awards:

Staff Absence Figures

Given the significance of staff absence in relation to the impact on our services, we will publish staff absence figures regularly.

Please note that the COVID-19 absence figures change not just on a daily but hourly basis due to the high levels of community transmission and the associated contact tracing requirements.

Staff Absence Figures
as at:
No. of staff employed by the Trust No. of staff absent due to COVID-19 (COVID Symptoms/Confirmed + Self-Isolating/Shielding) No. of staff absent due to COVID Symptoms or Confirmed COVID No. of staff absent due to Self-Isolating or Shielding No. of staff off due to non-COVID-19 sickness
21/4/22 12,181 364 252 112 866
14/4/22 12,181 423 311 112 845
7/4/22 12,163 628 358 270 837
31/3/22 12,163 609 421 188 864
24/3/22 12,163 647 444 203 859
16/3/22 12,163 639 427 212 888
10/3/22 12,163 640 435 205 873
3/3/22 12,163 656 457 199 865
24/2/22 12,151 673 469 204 837
17/3/22 12,151 695 460 235 916
10/2/22 12,151 752 483 269 838
3/2/22 12,151 793 463 330 814
1/3/22 12,152 629 374 255 814
27/1/22 12,152 703 388 315 814
25/1/22 12,152 536 310 226 814
20/1/22 12,152 651 377 274 950
18/1/22 12,152 559 348 211 950
13/1/22 12,152 652 408 244 951
7/1/22 12,152 615 390 225 608
6/1/22 12,152 647 191 435 651
30/12/21 12,170 489 127 339 784


Number of people in Emergency Departments across Northern Ireland


Promoting resident's oral health

Helping older people achieve healthier outcomes through better oral health

The Northern Trust has launched a new, educational resource aimed at helping older people achieve healthier outcomes through better oral health.

Launched during National Smile Month (16 May -16 June 2022), the new video resource aims to help staff support the oral health care needs of older people in acute and community settings including care homes.

Findings show that oral health care needs are not always met for frail, older people and lack of good oral health care causes a range of health issues.  Poor oral health can adversely affect a person’s general health and is specifically linked to cardiovascular disease, diabetes and bacterial pneumonia. Furthermore, good oral health has a positive impact on the person’s quality of life.

The Health and Social Care Board and British Dental Association highlighted in a report in 2019 that 73% of residents in care facilities have unmet decay, compared to 40% for those living in their own homes and that poor oral health care often leads to difficulties in eating and absorbing medications properly.

The new video resource, launched today (June 13), aims to achieve a greater awareness amongst staff of the importance of effective oral health care for older patients and residents.

Launching the resource, Elizabeth Graham, Assistant Director of Nursing said,

“We are delighted to introduce this Northern Trust oral health educational resource.

The video is the result of excellent collaborative working between a number of professionals who are dedicated to oral health as a fundamental part of resident and patient care.

“The resource outlines the principles of good oral health care and practical support.  It also provides advice from General Practice on when to refer to a dentist and GP, advice on supporting residents with a dysphagia, and the importance of providing oral health care at the end of life.

“I would like to thank everyone involved – the REACH Team, Dana Doyle, Practice Development Nurse, Deirdre Norton, Health Promotion Officer (Community Dental), Nikki Bass, Senior Care Assistant with Magherafelt Manor Care Home (Kathryn Homes NI), Dr Alan Lewis, Chair of Antrim/Ballymena GP Federation, Tracey Borthwick, Speech and Language Therapist and Leanne Devlin, Specialist Palliative Care Nurse with the Northern Ireland Hospice.

“We hope the resource is helpful in informing and enhancing clinical practice and also contributing and supporting a positive patient or resident experience.

Promoting Residents’ Oral Health from Northern Trust on Vimeo.

National Smile MonthDuring National Smile Month, the Oral Health Foundation is raising awareness of important oral health issues with the theme ‘Everyone deserves a healthy smile’.

The following links provide further information and details on how to support those in need of a little extra help.

For further details regarding the new Northern Trust oral health educational video, contact Maria Loughran – email:

Download National Smile Month Resources
Top tips for your own oral health
Diet and oral health
Oral health and general wellbeing

Causeway Catering Team

Causeway Catering Team wins national HCA Award

Congratulations to Robert Wright and the Catering Team at Causeway Hospital who won ‘Catering Team of the Year’ at the national Hospital Caterers Association (HCA) Awards, and to Karen McLaughlin, Northern Trust General Manager who collected the 2021 Leadership and Excellence Award at the recent ceremony held in Liverpool.

The HCA Awards recognise the work and commitment of hospital caterers across four nations in eight categories: Caterer of the Year, Catering Team of the Year, Efficiency and Improvement Award, Special Contribution Award, The Wilma Wilke Outstanding Service Award, Special Contribution Award, Chairman’s Choice, Rising Star Award and Leadership and Excellence Award.

Jeremy Foster, Assistant Director of Corporate Support Services said,

“This is a fantastic achievement.  Winning these awards recognises and showcases the talents, dedication and passion for catering within the Northern Health and Social Care Trust.

“The Catering Team has improved services for patients through collaborative working to drive fundamental positive change.

“Examples of their service improvement initiatives include: the Emergency Department mealtime service, providing a complete food service and delivering a full menu choice to patients on arrival; remodelling of the coffee shop area to provide a barista high street experience; and, introduction of an outdoor ‘Courtyard Bothy’ retail outlet, with a Christmas market feel.  The Bothy also promoted a ‘walking lunch’ initiative, which encouraged people to come and get a cup of soup or homemade pizza and go for a walk along one of many pathways within the Hospital grounds.”

Highlighting the commitment and dedication of Karen McLaughlin, Jeremy Foster said,

“With over 30 years’ service, from Catering Assistant to her current General Manager role, Karen has always been passionate about an inclusive culture for her staff.  Karen leads by example and is passionate about her services and maintaining high standards.  This award will sit proudly alongside her Caterer of the Year and Catering Team of the Year awards, which she achieved at previous HCA Awards Ceremonies.”

Northern Trust introduces Care Partner arrangements

The Northern Trust has introduced the Care Partner scheme following the announcement by the Health Minister that the scheme is to be extended to hospitals and hospices.

A Care Partner Arrangement can be agreed to support a patient with an identified need, such as assisting at mealtimes, or engaging in meaningful social interaction to support emotional wellbeing

The scheme allows for individualised support tailored to meet the needs of the patient.  This additional support complements the care delivered by staff within the hospital.

The Trust remains responsible for managing footfall and ensuring a Covid-19 secure environment, therefore all visits should continue to be agreed with the relevant ward.

More details on the Care Partner Scheme are available in the Department Of Health Care Partner Leaflet.

However, it is important that people remain mindful of the risk that COVID-19 presents.  Care Partners should follow the public health advice. We would ask Care Partners and visitors to continue to wear face coverings, maintain good hand hygiene and take Lateral Flow tests regularly.