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RCN Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year Awards 2010 are launched

Published: 29 January 2010

The search is on to find the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year 2010. The awards were launched today, Friday 29 January, by the 2009 winner, Iona McCormack, UTV presenter Lynda Bryans who comperes the awards and RCN Northern Ireland Director Janice Smyth.

Organised by the RCN, this is the fourteenth year of the awards which are designed to recognise and reward excellence in the nursing profession. This year’s ceremony will be held on 3 June 2010 at the Culloden Hotel, Holywood.

Last year’s winner, Iona McCormack, is a clinical nurse specialist in dermatology at Belfast City Hospital. She won the award for setting up a nurse-led screening service for the early detection of skin cancers.

Commenting on the awards, Janice Smyth, RCN Northern Ireland Director said: “For the past 14 years these awards have recognised and rewarded good practice in the nursing profession in Northern Ireland.

“Our aim is to focus on the achievement of local nurses and the contribution they make to developing services for patients and promoting high standards of patient care. Nurses like Iona illustrate the diverse nature of nursing today. We don’t often hear about the benefits gained from the research and initiatives they have pioneered and these awards provide an opportunity to recognise this.

“It is also an opportunity for the public to show how much they value the work that nurses carry out. I would urge any member of the public to nominate a nurse they feel has made a special contribution to their care, or that of a friend or member of their family, for the Patient’s Choice Award.

“The awards are designed to reward nurses working in all sectors of health care and this year, we have two new awards in the form of the Bamford Award for mental health and learning disability and the Public Health Award. Candidates can also apply for the Health Care Support Worker, Team Manager, Nursing Research and Student awards.

“The health service in Northern Ireland is facing significant challenges which makes it even more important that nurses are recognised and rewarded for their hard work and commitment to patient care. These awards are the perfect opportunity to highlight the benefits gained from the innovative and progressive initiatives that have been pioneered by local nurses.”

Application forms for all categories are available from the RCN by telephoning 028 90 384 600.  The closing date for entries is 26 February 2010.

-ENDS-

For further information please contact Lisa Holden on 028 90 384 600 or 07789 691505.

Notes to Editors:

Award categories

The RCN Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year Award seeks to recognise professional excellence, innovation and leadership within nursing and is open to all registered nurses and midwives working in all health care sectors in Northern Ireland. Candidates are required to demonstrate that they were instrumental in setting up a project, or initiated and led changes in nursing practice, that have had a demonstrable benefit for patient care.

The Patient’s Choice Award, sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline, rewards practitioners who have specifically been nominated by patients and members of the public in recognition of the care that they have provided and is open to all registered nurses, midwives and health care assistants working in all health care sectors in Northern Ireland. Patients, clients or relatives can nominate someone whom they believe has made a difference and has gone that extra bit further to ensure that the patient has received the highest standards of care.

The Team Manager Award, sponsored by Pfizer, is open to all nursing and midwifery team managers currently working in all health care sectors in Northern Ireland who succeed in raising standards of care for their patients and clients. Nominations are invited from fellow health and social care professionals.

The Student Award, sponsored by the Queen’s University of Belfast, is open to all pre-registration nursing students in Northern Ireland. The award aims to recognise and reward excellence in professional education.

The Nursing Research Award, sponsored by the University of Ulster, is open to registered nurses and midwives working in all health care sectors in Northern Ireland and aims to recognise and reward quality and excellence in nursing research. Candidates can nominate themselves or can be nominated by a colleague or their research supervisor.

The Health Care Support Worker Award, sponsored by the DHSSPS, is open to any health care assistant or nursing auxiliary who works as part of the nursing team and has demonstrated commitment to high standards of patient care.

The Outstanding Achievement Award, sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim, will be awarded to a nurse who has made an outstanding contribution to nursing in Northern Ireland.

The Bamford Vision Award for mental health and learning disability, sponsored by the DHSSPS is open to any registered nurses working in mental health and learning disability settings. The aim of the award is to showcase the work currently undertaken in mental health and learning disability settings and how nurses are looking towards the Bamford Vision which aims to drive forward service improvement for those with a mental health need or a learning disability.

The Public Health Award, sponsored by the Public Health Agency is open all registered nurses, midwives and health care assistants working in all health care sectors in Northern Ireland and aims to recognise work that has had an impact on health and social wellbeing inequalities.