The awards, held virtually on Friday, September 10, celebrated achievements for both 2019 and 2020 after last year’s ceremony was cancelled due to the pandemic.
And it was Covid which defined the evening, with a special recognition award presented to all North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust staff at the end of the ceremony.
Chief executive Caroline Walker said: “This last 18 months has been extraordinary and I want to express my sincerest gratitude to each and every one of our staff.
“We know that individuals and teams across the Trust have felt extreme pressure like nothing we have ever experienced before.
“The stories we have shared this evening have been inspiring and heart-warming and I am so proud of all of our staff members who continue to go above and beyond for our patients and each other.”
Individual award winners were chosen in eight different categories, with healthcare assistants, nurses, pharmacists and managers celebrated.
The chosen winner in the ‘caring and compassionate’ category was Donna Cowell, who works on ward A2. She built up a rapport with a patient who had been declining assistance with personal care – and had not had a bath for eight years.
Donna ran him a bath and spent two hours letting him have a soak, helping him with shaving and washing his beard. He said he felt like he’d been “treated like royalty”.
In the category for ‘seeking to improve and develop’ Laura Doyle, Macmillan lead cancer nurse, took home the prize for helping a lady who had been an inpatient for almost a year.
The patient had not had many opportunities to build any new memories with her newborn baby or other children and wanted to be at home for as long as possible before she died a dignified and peaceful death. Laura came up with the idea that the patient could undergo cycles of chemotherapy at home, which would help her to achieve her final wishes.
And the Unsung Hero award went to Magda Osigwe, who was made aware that a patient was really struggling and severely anxious before undergoing a procedure.
The patient didn’t speak much English, so communication was difficult and there wasn’t an interpreter available at that time. Magda came in and started speaking to the patient in their native language, which provided some immediate reassurance.
She remained with the patient during the procedure and also returned the following day, despite this being her day off, to support the patient once more.
Other winners included Nickie Forrester, senior medical secretary in paediatrics; Kathleen Walker, health records manager; James Honey, pharmacist; the trust medical equipment team; and Munir Cande, healthcare assistant on the cardiac ward.