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Northumbria staff’s dedication to patients celebrated at awards

Thursday, 03 July, 2014
Northumbria staff’s dedication to patients celebrated at awards

Staff at one of the country’s top performing NHS trusts have been celebrated for the role they play to help deliver high quality care to patients in Northumberland and North Tyneside.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust held its 2014 Building a Caring Future staff awards which rewarded the dedication and commitment of its employees.

From more than 200 entries, 13 awards were presented which represent the breadth and quality of the services provided by the trust.

Held for the first time last year, the categories included clinical service team, quality award, inspirational role model, essential services, and, a new award for 2014, student nurse of the year.

Jim Mackey, chief executive of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I was delighted to present our second Building a Caring Future staff awards and would like to congratulate the winners and everyone who was nominated.

“At a time when the NHS is going through one of the most challenging times in its history, it is important to take time out to recognise all that is great about it and celebrate its greatest resource – our staff.

“The quality of the nominations was again excellent and they reflected the trust’s values showing true professionalism, dedication and commitment that our staff bring to their work every day, providing our patients and the wider public with the high quality of services they expect.

“It is with great pride that we hold these awards and celebrate our staff’s dedication and commitment in this way.”

The award winners are as follows:

Volunteer of the year award – Anne Ward, North Tyneside hospital

The first award of the evening celebrated the trust’s volunteers – people who give up their time to help the trust. The award went to Anne Ward, who has volunteered at North Tyneside General Hospital since 1985, for her ‘total commitment’.

Apprentice/trainee of the year award – Hannah Harkins, Ward 4 – Hexham hospital

Those staff on the first steps of their career in the NHS were celebrated in the apprentice/trainee of the year award. The winner was catering apprentice Hannah Harkins who had extended her experience by supporting dementia and delirium patients on Ward 4 at Hexham General Hospital.

Student of the year award – Bernadette Morales-Redpath, North Tyneside hospital

‘Exemplary’ student Bernadette Morales-Redpath was named student of the year. The nomination states that she focuses on providing good patient care at North Tyneside hospital and her work-based studies have all been designed to improve patient experience.

Innovation award – upper gastrointestinal team – trust-wide

The upper gastrointestinal team won the innovation award for their work challenging the traditional provision of their service by reconfiguring and improving the laparoscopic cholecystectomy service pathway for the benefit of patients. 

Quality award –  palliative care units – North Tyneside and Wansbeck

The trust is passionate about improving quality and the award for this went to the palliative care units at North Tyneside and Wansbeck hospitals which care for patients approaching the end of life. While national evaluations show these to be among the top performing inpatient units, the award recognised the personal touches of the staff to improve patients’ and their relatives’ experiences.

Celebrating equality and diversity award – catering (Cobalt) team and workforce team (HR)

The catering team at Cobalt and the workforce team won the celebrating equality and diversity award for the hard work they have done to help John McManus feel welcome and a valued member of staff.

Inspirational role model award – Kim Minnis, ward manager, Hexham hospital

The award for inspirational role model, which received the highest number of entries, was awarded to Kim Minnis, ward manager on Ward 3 at Hexham hospital. Kim was described as ‘motivated, inspiring, committed and very supportive of her team and colleagues’ and successfully implemented many systems on the ward which have helped contribute to its excellent patient experience results.

Essential services award – domestic team, Berwick Infirmary

The domestic team at Berwick Infirmary won the essential services award which recognised services which the trust could not function without.  The nomination said the team ‘take pride in their role and work tirelessly to ensure that care is provided in a safe clean environment’.

Support team of the year award – payroll team, trust-wide

The award for support team of the year went to the payroll team which ensures that the trust’s 9,000 employees and those in other organisations are accurately paid each month.

Partnership working award – learning about the patient training programme

This category recognises those teams who work in partnership with external organisations and other disciplines across the trust to improve or change services for the benefit of our patients and carers.

The ‘learning about the patient – dementia, delirium and depression training programme’ won the partnership working award for linking in with other organisations to deliver a programme to increase knowledge of caring for people with these conditions.

Clinical service team of the year – anticoagulation/pathology team, trust-wide

The anticoagulation/pathology team, which is made up of anticoagulation specialist nurses, senior assistant technical officers, medical laboratory assistants and clerical support was named clinical service team of the year for its work offering an extensive service over a large demographic area.

Making a difference award – Gordon Johnstone

The 2014 making a difference award was presented to Gordon Johnstone who has worked for the trust for 35 years from his early days in the late 70s when he began as a messenger at Wansbeck hospital, to his job today as support services supervisor for our community hospitals.

Gordon has always gone well beyond what is expected of him and is committed to his job, his staff and the trust.

The Rosemary Stephenson student nurse of the year award – Emily Pitkethly

The new award for 2014 was the Rosemary Stephenson student nurse of the year award named in recognition of the trust’s executive director of nursing and her contribution to the trust.

Rosemary is committed to delivering quality care and compassion to patients and the role of training and education in achieving this. The recipient of the award was Emily Pitkethly for her work during her first placement in the emergency care centre at Hexham hospital.  She was described in the nomination as an ‘extremely competent student nurse’ and everyone was impressed with her ‘knowledge, confidence and professionalism’.

The sponsored awards ceremony took place earlier this month and was attended by staff from across the organisation.


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