At the launch it was confirmed that a celebratory gala dinner, at which the winners of this year’s awards will be announced and prizes awarded, will be held on Wednesday 16 November at the prestigious venue of City Hall, Cardiff.
Nurses can be nominated for the awards by peers, teams, managers, patients and the general public. The nominated nurses must demonstrate a passion for the nursing profession and exemplify distinction in care, leadership, service and innovation. The winners are selected by panels of judges - for a total of 17 awards (including Wales Nurse of the Year) - made up of distinguished nursing leaders and experts in their fields of practice and research.
This year, we are also introducing a new ‘Mentorship Award’, which aims to recognise an outstanding mentor in their field of practice.
Of the launch, Tina Donnelly, said: “I am thrilled to be launching the RCN in Wales Nurse of the Year Awards 2016 at Aneurin Bevan University Health Board - the workplace of last year’s Wales Nurse of the Year, Claire Harris.”
“These prestigious Awards are now in their fifth year and as such have become a highlight in the nursing calendar – celebrating the biggest and brightest stars of the nursing family in Wales.”
“Each year we are pleased to see the calibre of entrants reflecting the high standards of health care delivery occurring in Wales each and every day. From the thousands of nominations we’ve received over the past four years - highlighting the work of health care workers in a variety of disciplines and numerous areas of expertise – it is safe to say we are fortunate to have such excellent individuals working to look after our health and happiness.”
“As with previous years, we are once again ready to welcome nominations from those who wish to celebrate the hard work and commitment of their colleagues, or their carers.”
“I look forward to honouring each of our finalists at Cardiff City Hall in November and announcing our fifth Wales Nurse of the Year.”
Gaynor Jones, Chair of the RCN Welsh Board and RCN Council Member for Wales, said of the awards: “As a practicing nurse I see the fantastic work that happens within the health service each and every day and in my role for the RCN I’ve met countless more nurses and health care support workers who often go above the call of duty to ensure their patients receive the best care possible.”
“It’s these individuals, who work harder to better the lives of others, that we must recognise – whether this be achieved through, research, innovation or working on the frontline of care.”
“The selfless nature of these individuals is the exact reason why the RCN in Wales Nurse of the Year Awards are just so important – they are an opportunity to celebrate the hard work of those who don’t ask for admiration or accolade, as they are simply “doing their job”. However, these jobs are helping to save lives and better the future of the Welsh public and we must not forget this or let it go unnoticed.”
“I have always been a proud Welsh nurse and now I ask you to show your pride in the profession by nominating someone who demonstrates the passion, ability and commitment it takes to be a positive member of the nursing family in Wales.”
David Jenkins OBE, Chair, Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, who welcomed the RCN to the health board, said of the occasion: “The Nurse of the Year Awards are an important way to recognise the commitment of nurses in Wales to the highest standards of patient care. All those nominated for these Awards demonstrate the fantastic, innovative and dedicated work of NHS nursing and midwifery staff.”
“We are very proud of Claire Harris being named Wales Nurse of the Year last year, but we’re also very proud of all her colleagues in the Health Board who work tirelessly to provide the best possible care for patients in Gwent.”
Jason Mohammad, BBC Presenter and Journalist, and Host of the Awards for the past four years, said: "What an honour it is to once again be asked to be involved in such a fantastic evening, taking time to shine a light and appreciate the vital and often unsung work of the nursing profession.”
Andrea Byrne, ITV News Presenter, who will co-host this year’s Awards for the first time, said: “I am delighted to be asked to co-host at the Nurse of The Year Awards as the Royal College of Nursing in Wales celebrates its 50th anniversary year alongside the centenary year of the RCN nationally. The ceremony will also be in its fifth year so it feels like quite a special night is in store! I look forward to celebrating with all the finalists and winners and hope to make it an evening to remember.”
In addition to the prestige associated with winning an award, category winners will receive a monetary prize plus a trophy. The overall winner will receive the accolade of being recognised as ‘Wales Nurse of the Year 2016’ and will receive a superb prize in recognition of this.