Two nurses from Northampton General Hospital have earned on the highest healthcare awards available for going above and beyond the expectations of their role.
Holly Slyne and Gillian Smith are among some of the first nurses nationally to receive the Chief Nursing Officer silver award.
The award and two bespoke badges were presented to them during a visit to the hospital in June from Susan Aitkenhead, deputy Chief Nursing Officer.
Holly, infection prevention and control clinical nurse specialist, received the award for her infectious enthusiasm and commitment to ensuring patients receive the best possible care. She was recognised for her work to lead a number of changes in the hospital, including better mouth care for patients, and work to keep patients coming in for surgery safe from infections.
Describing what the award meant to her Holly said: “I’d seen the badges launched on Twitter a few months ago and had seen other nurses receiving them in other hospitals. I thought it was a great way to recognise NHS staff, but never in a million years did I think that I’d get one.
“It was a complete surprise. I’d been asked to go along to the meeting to talk about my work with our Shared Decision Making councils, then my manager Wendy read out the nomination and I was presented with the award. I was completely lost for words, which is rare for me! It’s wonderful to have such meaningful recognition and to receive this amazing accolade from the Chief Nurse”.
Gillian, Nurse Consultant in Gynaecology, was recognised for her work supporting the gynaecology team, dedication to the hospital and the effort she has put into the gynaecology service. Gillian has established nurse-led outpatient clinics and is one of a few nurse consultants who work autonomously, having her own theatre list and outpatient treatment clinics for patients. As well as her clinical work she also provides training for nursing and medical colleagues and is clinical lead for Gynaecology Ambulatory Services.
Gillian said “I’d been invited along to the meeting to meet Susan and I kept checking my watch as I knew I had a list of patients starting in the afternoon. All I was thinking about were the patients and making sure I wasn’t late for the clinic. Then they presented me with the award which was completely overwhelming and unexpected.
“I love my job and it’s so nice to have the recognition for the hard work and dedication for the last 37 years.
“I have been one of the first nurses nationally to undertake procedures traditionally performed by doctors. I like to see myself as a role model for nurses. I’ve worked my way up from a HCA to a Nurse Consultant. I now speak nationally and internationally at conferences and training events. My priority is always my patients, but training the next generation of nurses and doctors is very important to me”.
The award scheme was introduced by the Chief Nurse, Ruth May earlier this year. There are two badges available Silver and Gold for those who go above and beyond in their everyday roles.