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The Kate Granger Awards

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The winners of the Kate Granger Awards for Compassionate Care were announced at the NHS Health and Care Innovation Expo on 4 March. The awards were named after doctor, blogger and author Kate Granger, who also suffers from a rare form of cancer. The awards aim to recognise individuals, teams and organisations that have made a difference to patient care.

Dr Granger was behind the #hellomynameis campaign on social media which encourages clinicians to introduce themselves to patients in order to create better relationships between clinicians and their patients. The campaign was inspired by Ms Granger's own experience.

The awards consisted of two different categories, an individual award and a team award.

There were 80 nominations in total from across the country, submitted online, and from across the health service, including NHS organisations, the voluntary sector and independent providers. Theses entrants were then reduced to 13 shortlisted nominations, seven individuals and six organisations.

Among the shortlist was community nurse, Jo Murray, for the provision of care for care homes and Joan Pons Laplana, a community nurse at Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Trust for his work on workforce planning which reduced the different number of care workers and clinicians who visit each patient.

Included in the shortlist for the team award was the Spiral Health Community Interest Company, for their 'patient centred journey' for patients at Bipsham Hospital near Blackpool, and Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust for its development of the role of bereavement midwife at St Mary's Hospital.

The awards were launched by the NHS Employers Organisation and were backed by Jane Cummings, the chief nursing officer for NHS England.

Ms Cummings said: 'Great, compassionate patient care is about listening to patients, talking to patients and responding to their needs. It's also about having the courage to step back when you think you might not be doing something right and having the ability to reflect and constantly improve the care we provide for patients.'

Dean Royles, the chief executive of NHS Employers, says that the idea for the awards came from wanting to recognise the outstanding work that Kate has being doing to champion compassionate care. 'We thought that developing an awards scheme would allow NHS organisations an opportunity to showcase the work that teams and individuals are doing on a daily basis.'

#hellomynameis

Dr Kate Granger started the #hellomynameis campaign after members of staff failed to introduce themselves to her when she was in hospital receiving care.

After writing a blog post about it and posting it on Twitter, in Septemner 2013, Dr Granger received a lot of support for the campaign and this grew so that she now has around 20,000 followers on Twitter. She writes an award-winning blog and has published two books, The Other Side and The Bright Side, outlining her experiences as a patient from the perspective of a healthcare professional.

Winning care

The winner of the individual award was Dr Sophie Edwards a consultant geriatrician at North Middlesex Hospitals NHS Trust. Dr Edwards developed '10 things about me', an initiative which supports staff to build and maintain engaging and meaningful relationships with patients who have dementia. She has also introduced a 'carers passport' to encourage carers to come into the acute setting to provide help and support for the person with dementia. The passports facilitate the process with free parking and open access to the ward. She has increased dementia screening on admission and successfully bid for funding to introduce massage therapy for dementia patients.

Dr Edwards said: 'The initiatives we have introduced are all about connecting with the patient as a person. We can learn more about a patient when we know more about them as people, about their life, and that, in turn, can improve the care we provide.

'The award is testament to the improvements in the quality of care we provide for patients with dementia. But this is just a start and we cannot be complacent, we must keep on looking for ways in which we can improve.'

The winner of the group award was the Teenage and Young Adult Service at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust follows the principle of 'Young Person first, Cancer Diagnosis second.' In its 11 bed ward and two day chair unit, the service offers a 'home from home' environment, with open visiting, free Wi-Fi, a 'mobiles on ' policy and extensive IT facilities. The service also allows children to celebrate major milestones in their lives such as birthdays and school proms.

Dr Granger said of the winners: 'It was a difficult decision but the winners really are outstanding examples of patient-centred care.

'It is often the smallest things that can make the biggest impact on patient care. This is certainly what I have found as a patient and an observer of the way care is delivered.'

Dr Granger was also awarded a surprise award for her #hellomynameis campaign.

In terms of continuing the awards in the future Mr Royles says, 'these awards have been a success and with Kate's agreement we will run them again in the future.'

Dr Granger is an inspirational figure helping to improve practice in healthcare professionals, and these awards are key to recognising professionals that are already doing this.

What do you think? Leave a comment below or tweet your views to @IndyNurseMag

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