Recognition for GWH staff in national health awards

Posted: April 3, 2013

After being shortlisted for the Health Service Journal (HSJ) Awards last year, GWH is celebrating further national recognition of its staff in 2013.

Radiology Sister Alice Bevan has been named as Student Nurse of the Year: Post-registration in 2013's Student Nursing Times Awards, which were announced on 1st May, while two other staff have been shortlisted for the Patient Safety Awards 2013.  

Alice Bevan, Radiology Sister at Great Western Hospital 

Alice has won Student Nurse of the Year: Post-registration in the Student Nursing Times Awards 2013. She also won Oncology and Haematology Nurse of the Year  at the British Journal of Nursing (BJN) Awards at the end of March. The awards recognise the enormous contribution individual nurses make towards the nursing profession and celebrate clinical excellence and innovation. 

Alice, who has recently achieved a Masters degree with distinction at UWE was nominated for both awards for designing, leading and evaluating a service improvement project to improve the experience and quality of care for patients with palliative care needs, specifically those suffering from recurrent malignant ascites(caused by cancer, malignant acites is the buildup of fluid in the abdominal cavity).

Ultrasound guided drainage of this fluid provides patients with relief from often distressing symptoms.  Normally this is done in an inpatient setting by doctors, but the aim of this project was to initiate a dedicated nurse-led outpatient service for the procedure.

Development of this new service has significantly reduced cost, reduced time unnecessarily spent on acute wards overnight, and provided flexibility contributing to patient quality of life and care.

Alice said: "It is a great privilege to have been nominated for both awards, and I was very pleased to win the BJN Award, I couldn't believe it.  It has been a lot of hard work and it is wonderful to achieve recognition for the service and for Radiology nurses.  Evaluation of the service has been exceptionally positive, from patients, relatives and referrers alike.  The service is unique to the best of my knowledge. There are other day case services in existence, but they tend to take up the whole day, whereas we complete the procedure in two hours."

Adegbayi Ukoha and Andrew Stanton have both been selected as finalists for the Patient Safety Awards 2013.  These awards aim to recognise the best patient safety initiatives so that they can be shared across the health service.

Adegbayi Ukoha, Governance Pharmacist at Great Western Hospital

Adegbayi is a finalist in the Improving Safety in Medicines Management category.  This is for a project based on reducing the potential risk of harm to patients due to missed doses of critical medicines.

Adegbayi and the Medicines Governance team worked closely with other nursing, medical and pharmacy staff to achieve this by the introduction of a range of measures.  These included carrying out a rolling missed doses Ward audit program helping to identify the causes of missed doses and potential solutions, and developing an online missed doses avoidance support tool.

The impact of the project has been seen a reduction in the number of missed doses in the Trust and a complete shift in culture, with a greatly increased awareness amongst nursing, medical and pharmacy staff of their role in missed doses avoidance. 

Adegbayi said: "The Medicines Governance team and I are very pleased to have been shortlisted for this award.  We have made a lot of progress in considerably reducing the incidence of missed doses in the Trust; and I think the nomination has helped raise the profile of what we are doing which will help us to further our progress and sustain this change."

Dr Andrew Stanton, Consultant in Physician in Respiratory Medicine

Dr Stanton is a finalist in the Patient Safety in Diagnosis category of the Patient Safety Awards 2013.  This is for his work as part of the Swindon Pleural Service; the aims were to achieve prompt, safe and appropriate intervention for patients with pleural disease attending GWH, to bring patient care closer to home and to reduce patient length of stay. *(A pleura a large, thin sheet of tissue that wraps around the outside of your lungs and lines the inside of your chest cavity).

This project was led by Dr Stanton with support from Consultant colleagues, Respiratory Nurse Specialist and the management team.  They invested in a portable ultrasound machine which is the cornerstone of the new pleural service. This service allows any hospital team to receive a prompt opinion and ultrasound examination to guide safe intervention for patients with pleural disease.

Reconfiguring the service has also allowed patients with pleural disease to be directed to a specific clinic where intervention can be performed within the same visit.

Dr Stanton said: "I am delighted to be a finalist for the Patient Safety Awards; it is great to be able to raise the profile of the innovative work we are doing and share our experiences and findings.  We are pleased with the success of our service; the culture of managing patients with pleural disease who require intervention has now changed within our organisation to one where prompt involvement of the respiratory team is now standard. Possession of the ultrasound scanner has also allowed consolidation of skills amongst trained operators as well as raising training and competence levels of more junior trainees within the department."

Winners of the Patient Safety Awards will be announced on 9th July. 

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