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Staff from Richmond House and from Hospice in your Care Home at the 2019 awards held at Leigh Sports Village.

Awards to celebrate nursing home staff

Dedicated staff from care settings across Wigan borough will be recognised at a ceremony organised by Wigan and Leigh Hospice on Friday, June 25.

The charity’s Hospice In Your Care Home team has arranged the ceremony for the fifth time following a break during 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

And this year, there are two local providers who are up for awards. Both Ashwood Court, on Woodford Ave, Lowton and Elmridge Court, on Robson Way, Lowton are nominees in the ‘Care Setting of the Year’ Award. Meanwhile, Kim Jackson, who is manager at Elmridge Court, is up for the prestigious Manager of the Year Award.

This, the first virtual Hospice in your Care Home awards ceremony, aims to recognise the commitment and drive among care staff to improve palliative and end-of-life care for their patients and residents.

Debbie Jones, Manager of Hospice in your Care Home, said: “Staff in care settings in our borough have been through an incredibly difficult time this past year. This awards ceremony aims to recognise and celebrate what has been achieved for patients and residents during the pandemic, and highlight examples of compassion and dedication to caring, particularly for those people in the last few days of life.

“It is extremely humbling to see the commitment of staff during one of the most challenging periods in health and social care, and the awards evening is our way of saying thank you to all those unsung heroes, who have continued to prioritise the people they care for, despite their own anxiety and loss.”

Since May 2020 the team has been delivering online education and training. A year on it is accessed by 47 of the 52 residential and nursing homes in the borough as well as Extra Care, Supported Living and learning disability services.

On the evening a total of 13 titles will be awarded:

  • Nurse of the Year
  • Senior Health Care Assistant of the Year
  • Nursing Assistant of the Year
  • Health Care Assistant / Support Worker of the Year
  • Dignity Champion of the Year
  • Care Setting of the Year
  • Manager of the Year
  • Deputy / Clinical Lead of the Year
  • Most Innovative Setting
  • Special Recognition Award
  • Non clinical Staff Award
  • Peer Award
  • Family & Residents Award

Up until the pandemic the team of registered nurses and a healthcare assistant were a regular presence in nursing homes.

The team adapted quickly when the care homes closed to visitors due to COVID-19, and created a new package of training tailored to dealing with the issues around the pandemic that staff were dealing with, including identifying the symptoms of COVID-19, managing respiratory problems and promoting spiritual needs.

This training has been offered free of charge to all residential and nursing homes in Wigan borough.

Debbie added: “Although the course was developed with care homes in mind, it became increasingly apparent that the knowledge and skills were transferrable to other care settings, and many other services have approached Hospice in your Care Home to request access to support during the pandemic, including Extra Care and the learning disability teams. Redeployed staff have sometimes found themselves caring for dying patients for the first time, and have needed support with their learning needs, particularly in relation to recognising dying, communication skills, spirituality and symptom management.”

Staff from all care settings the team works with have been able to nominate their colleagues for the Peer Award. Families and patients were able to vote for the ‘Family and Residents Award’.

The winners will be selected by the Hospice In Your Care Home Steering Group which includes team members from Hospice In Your Care Home and Wigan Council’s quality performance officers team, with contribution from other visiting health and social care professionals.

Wigan and Leigh Hospice works with a variety of community settings/organisations, in order to ensure that as many local people as possible can benefit from our expertise and knowledge in end-of-life care.

Pictured top: Staff from Richmond House and from Hospice in your Care Home at the 2019 awards held at Leigh Sports Village.

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