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Award season in full swing in West Herts

Posted: 19 June 2019

Picture of Paul da Gama and Tania Marcus at an awards ceremony holding the awards they won

(L to R) Tania Marcus and Paul da Gama with their awards

Staff at West Herts Hospitals NHS Trust have had plenty to celebrate recently as workers throughout the trust have won or been shortlisted for a bumper crop of awards.

The celebrations kicked off when Chief Nurse Tracey Carter received a prestigious Chief Nursing Officer award in recognition of her sterling work across many years in the NHS.

Picture of Tracey Carter with Chief Nursing Officer of NHS England Dr Ruth May

(L to R) Tracey Carter with Chief Nursing Officer of NHS England Dr Ruth May

Tracey, who received her award from Chief Nursing Officer of NHS England Dr Ruth May, was praised for being an 'exceptional nurse leader' and for the 'quality of care'' being delivered at West Herts.

At the Healthcare People Management Association's annual Excellence Awards the trust were finalists in a whopping five different categories!

The HR team led by Paul da Gama, Tania Marcus and Debbie Foster were thrilled to take home the Excellence in Employee Engagement Award for their work on ‘The Big 5’. This trust-wide project based on results of the staff survey has helped to improve culture and patient care. The judges remarked that the project “won on passion” and added "the simplicity and transferability was good and the project has great potential for sustainability."

To make Tania Marcus' night even better, the Head of HR Business Partners and Organisation Development, scooped a 'Rising Star' award too! The judges noted her significant recent work on improving staff engagement at the trust and praised her for “consistently giving the very best of herself to improve both patient and staff experience."

Rounding out the successful night, the trust were also finalists for Excellence in Organisational Development, HR Analytics and Deputy HR Manager of the year.

The nominations continued to stack up as the Nursing Times Workplace Awards announced their shortlists recently, with even more West Herts staff being recognised for their hard work and innovation in four categories.

The trust was thrilled to be shortlisted for the Workforce Team of the Year. An award to celebrate the HR/workforce team that has delivered significant improvements to the recruitment, retention, training and development opportunities for all nursing, midwifery and support staff.

The Multiprofessional Preceptorship Programme is in the running for Preceptorship of the Year (Up to 1,500 Nursing Staff). This award aims to recognise an employer's preceptorship programme for newly qualified nurses and midwives that demonstrates support, development, coaching and mentorship of new staff.

Not one to rest on its laurels, the Preceptorship Programme is also a finalist for the Best Wellbeing and Staff Engagement Initiative too. This category recognises the trust as an employer that has made a real improvement to its staff engagement activities and demonstrated a continued commitment to the mental and physical wellbeing of its staff.

Picture of the safe care team standing in an office

The safe care team

Meanwhile, the Safe Care team are hoping to take home the Best Use of Technology to Improve the Working Environment award - aimed at recognising an organisation that demonstrates a meaningful use of technology to improve the working environment, giving nurses and midwives more time to care.

The Patient Safety Awards provides a further chance for glory, as the trust have been named as a finalist in two categories. The improvement project for nasogastric tube management on an acute stroke unit was shortlisted for the Patient Safety Education and Training award, and the paediatric pharmacy team are up for the Best Partnership Solution Improving Patient Safety award for ‘Druggle’, a medication safety huddle.

Picture of Dr Prema Singh with her award presenbted by the Royal College of Pathologists

(L to R) Dr Prema Singh pictured with her award presented by a member of the Royal College of Pathologists

Yet another member of staff to receive a prestigious award recently is Dr Prema Singh. Dr Singh was presented with a RCPath excellence award from the Royal College of Pathologists in recognition of her significant contribution to microbiology. Dr Singh said she was absolutely thrilled and extremely honoured to receive this award. She added “this has to be one of the proudest moments in my career. I feel very privileged to be doing what I do and to have worked with a fabulous team locally and nationally in making best patient care our focus."

Finally, the wonderful volunteers of the Carers Support Team charity were put forward for an NHS Parliamentary Award, by local Watford MP Richard Harrington, for the invaluable support they provide to parents and families of patients on the children’s wards and in the children’s emergency department.

The trust is absolutely delighted to see so many of its hard working teams and individuals being publically recognised and celebrated for their tireless dedication to providing the very best care for every patient, every day.


Notes to editors

  1. For more information, please contact the communications team on: 01923 436280 or email: For out of hours media enquiries please call the Watford General Hospital switchboard on 01923 244366 and ask for the on call communications manager.
  2. West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust serves people from across Hertfordshire, north London and further afield. It operates from three hospitals; Watford General, St Albans City and Hemel Hempstead. The trust has a catchment area of over 500,000 people and is one of the largest employers locally, with around 5,000 staff and volunteers.
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