“This ceremony was a wonderful celebration of the work our regions health visitors deliver in our communities. It is essential we recognise their commitment to this important profession. I have been at the receiving end of this service and the treatment I received was excellent.”
Health visitors aim to improve the health of families and children in the crucial first few years of life. Working in the community, they prevent illness and promote health and wellbeing.
Earlier this year, the region’s NHS encouraged the public to send in their nominations for health visitors that had made a difference to their families. There was an overwhelming response, and local health visiting awards took place in the four Primary Care Trust clusters, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, County Durham and Darlington and Teesside to commend the exceptional work carried out in each area.
The winners from each area were then put forward to an expert judging panel to decide which nominees should be recognised at the regional awards ceremony.
The awards up for grabs included ‘Best newly qualified Health Visitor’ which was snapped up by Sharon Lynch who works in the South Tyneside east team; ‘Outstanding individual’ went to Finulua Deehan who is based in the area one team in Darlington; ‘The family award’ was given to Judith Pringle who works with families connected to Northumbria healthcare; ‘Team innovation’ went to Tees locality team and finally the ‘Life time achievement’ was received by Barbara Brookes from Teesside. Barbara said:
“I’m extremely pleased and proud to have been awarded the life time achievement award. I have been a Health Visitor for 30 years and to have this recognition is wonderful. Working with families in the Teesside area has made my career memorable and worthwhile. I couldn’t have done it without the support from my colleagues and I hope that I have been as supportive to them.”
Sam Cramond, strategic head of child and maternal health services at NHS North East, who spoke at the ceremonies said:
“We were absolutely delighted to receive so many nominations for these awards which demonstrate the gratitude and admiration many families have for their Health Visitor. It was clear from reading the nominations that many Health Visitors regularly go beyond the call of duty to provide exceptional care for local children and that many parents see them as a vital lifeline in bringing up a young family.”
“The awards were a chance for everyone, colleagues and the public, to show Health Visitors how important their profession is to the NHS and say thank you for a job well done.”
Lynne D’Evelin – communications lead
Tel: 0191 210 6419
Full details of the nominees, runner ups and winners can be found at http://www.northeast.nhs.uk/workforce/hvawards.aspx
Carol with each winner (attached)
Carol with all nominees and winners
Carol with each area winners and nominees
List of winners and runner ups and area:
Best newly qualified
Winner - Sharon Lynch - South of Tyne and Wear
Sharon has been awarded the Best Newly Qualified Health Visitor Award because of her professionalism in all aspects of her work, her willingness to lead and her positive approach to new challenges. Her colleagues emphasised that Sharon was a supportive and respected colleague who cared deeply about her clients and who would always seek to introduce new innovations and ideas if she identified a gap in service. Sharon is a truly exceptional newly qualified health visitor who is working as part of a dynamic and noteworthy team.
Runner up - Michelle Corkhill – North of Tyne
Runner up - Leanne McMahon – NHS Tees
Winner - Finulua Deehan – County Durham & Darlington
Finulua has been awarded the Outstanding Individual Contribution Award because of her exceptional and effective work with the Darlington Travelling Community. The increased uptake in immunisations and the use of dental health services by the travelling community is a testament to her success and to the trust and respect she has developed with this vulnerable group. Finulua’s colleagues emphasised her outstanding knowledge about the travelling community, her determination to ensure the voice of the travellers is heard when services are being developed and her unerring loyalty to the travellers over many years which has been so beneficial in facilitating their access to health care.
Runner up - Glenda Brown – North of Tyne
Runner up - Sandra McAndrew – South of Tyne and Wear
Runner up - Kath Lane – County Durham & Darlington
Runner up - Jean Anderson – NHS Tees
Winner - Judith Pringle – North of Tyne
This award is voted for by the public and there was an overwhelming acknowledgment from the public in recognition of Judith Pringle’s services to heath visiting. There were over 20 emails in support of Judith receiving this award. Judith’s clients/families have acknowledged Judith for her caring and compassionate nature and detailed how she had helped them to stop smoking, to breast feed and to access local groups and activities. One stated that they couldn’t ask for anyone better than Judith and she has treated everyone so fairly. Another commented that they trusted Judith implicitly and knew that she will be a constant source of support throughout the next few years as her sons grew up. The following quotes sum up Judith’s relationships with her clients and families and why she is so valued by the community she works with:
‘Judith is very good, very kind, very helpful, very supportive and always there when you need her’
‘She deserves this award, she hasn’t just helped me but she has helped a lot of people in our community’
‘She is always there when you are in need’
‘She is simply the best!’
Runner up - Diane Skirving – NHS Tees
Runner up - Sara McKnight – South of Tyne and Wear
Runner up - Naz Carrington Brown – County Durham & Darlington
Team innovation award
Winner - Locality Team 2 – NHS Tees
Locality Team 2 has been awarded the Best Team Innovation Award as the team has excelled by ‘seeing outside the box’ to challenge historical thinking and working practices. The team applied the principles of the lean methodology to redesign the delivery of the Healthy Child Pathway. The review of the 3 year process has improved services offered to children and their families and also released savings in staff time and costs. Feedback from the local community is very positive and encouraging.
The team has shared their re-design with other Health Visitor Teams to ensure that best practice is implemented across the South Tees Locality.
Runner up - Area 1 HV Service, Darlington – County Durham & Darlington
Runner up - Blyth HV Team – North of Tyne
Runner up - HV Team – South of Tyne and Wear
Life time achievement award
Winner - Barbara Brookes – NHS Tees
Barbara Brookes has been awarded the Life Time Achievement Award because of her passion for community development and determination to empower and help local families to access health opportunities and take leadership of their health needs. In a career stretching over 35 years within the NHS and local authority, Barbara’s colleagues have talked of being inspired by Barbara’s drive and determination in leading services for children and families and of her energy, enthusiasm and charisma. One stated ‘all who have worked with Barbara were inspired to join her in achieving her vision, when the going got tough Barbara just encouraged us to reach higher and to be more focused’.
The Panel also wished to highlight that this was a difficult category to award as the other finalists were all very strong. The Panel particularly highlighted that Susan Godfrey came a close second.
Runner up - Pauline Christenson – North of Tyne
Runner up - Joe Corrigan – South of Tyne and Wear
Runner up - Susan Godfrey – County Durham & Darlington