Welsh Ambulance Service Honours Colleagues at Staff Awards 2018

16th November 2018

THE Welsh Ambulance Service honoured its staff and volunteers at an awards ceremony at the Brangwyn Hall in Swansea, on Thursday 18 October 2018.

The Vice Lord Lieutenant of South Glamorgan, Dr Edward Roberts OsTJ DL., presented awards for Her Majesty the Queen’s Long Service and Good Conduct Medals for staff with more than 20 years in the Emergency Medical Service (EMS).

Retirees were also recognised at the ceremony as well as non-EMS staff who had dedicated 20, 30 or 40 years’ service.

As well as the traditional awards, the Trust celebrated the winners of its category awards which are aligned to its behaviours.
Time was also taken to honour colleagues who have died in service.

Speaking at the ceremony, Chief Executive Jason Killens said: “While it’s just a little over four weeks since I took up my role as Chief Executive, I am already enthused by what I have seen and totally aware of what an absolute privilege it is to lead this organisation.”

“The welcome I have had in the last month has been amazing, uplifting and encouraging, and it is our fantastic people who make this organisation what it is.”

The ceremony also saw the presentation of two special awards, The Gail Williams and Dr Jennifer Bucknell Awards. The Gail Williams Award, which is sponsored by Michael Williams and his daughters Megan and Sioned in memory of his wife and their mother, Gail Williams, pays tribute to those who have provided clinical excellence in the pre-hospital setting.

This year it was presented to joint winners, the team from South Powys Locality and Paramedic team, Jayne Chislett and Louise Rees.

The South Powys team were recognised for supporting a multi-disciplinary approach to a complex incident which required a clinical intervention not previously experienced by any of the individual crew members.

Jayne Chislett and Louise Rees were acknowledged for their quick response to an incident involving the resuscitation of a 14 year old child.

The Trust also presented its Dr Jennifer Bucknell Community First Responder (CFR) Award, which recognises those who have gone the extra mile to deliver first aid to their community.

The award, which was inspired by the sudden death of popular Cardiff University student and first responder, Dr Jennifer Bucknell, went to Tenby and Saundersfoot CFR team who provided a professional service and were recognised for delivering their role with great pride. The team is constantly looking for new ways to support the local community, including securing funding for 20 new public access defibrillators.

In the Trust’s category awards, the Team of the Year award, sponsored by Lawray Architects, went to the Non-Emergency Patient Transport Service, End of Life Operational Delivery Team, who provide easier access to transport for terminally ill patients wishing to go to their preferred place of death.

Edward O’Brian took home the Personal Excellence award, sponsored by GMB Union, for his commitment to how the End of Life Care is delivered across Wales, work that has been recognised by Macmillan.

Meanwhile, the Inspiring Others award went to David Hughes who has been a member of the Welsh Ambulance Service for over 40 years. As a Paramedic, Trainer and Advanced Paramedic Practitioner, he has mentored many Emergency Medical Service Staff within the Trust.

The recipient of the Innovation award, sponsored by Vodafone, was the Betsi Cadwaladr Advanced Paramedic Practitioner Team who were brought together to provide patient-centred care and to help prevent unnecessary hospital admissions. During their pilot, 307 patients benefitted from the new service, saving 732 ambulance hours and maintaining 98% patient satisfaction.

The Valuing Inclusion award, was given to Alison Johnstone for being instrumental in developing the Trusts first Dementia plan and personally meeting with over 200 people living with dementia, their carers and families, to capture their needs from the service.

The Finance Team won the Health and Wellbeing award for building a strong ‘team ethos’, despite the challenges of being located across three different sites. On a recent ‘virtual return walk’ the team collectively walked 4,652,573 steps which is roughly 2,326 miles.

Taking home the Great Listener award was Control Manager, Michael O’Connor, who has been described as one of the most caring and thoughtful people in the organisation.

For the first time, the ceremony celebrated the Public Recognition award. This award is in recognition of a member of the public who has shown exemplary bravery when faced with one or many medical emergencies.

The award went to The St David’s First Responder Team who have attended numerous traumatic incidents and, more often than not, have been the first to the scene.

The next award was the Patient’s Choice award which recognises people who go the extra mile for their patients. The winner of this award was Paramedic, Julian Rudge. When a patient fell at home and started fitting, Julian was the first responder to reach the scene. Arriving within five minutes, Julian calmed not only the patient, but also the worried and distressed family.

In closing the event, Interim Chair Martin Woodford said: “Tonight has been a wonderfully inspiring and enjoyable evening. We have had the opportunity to share and celebrate your hard work and your achievements.”

Prior to his closing comments, Martin Woodford presented the penultimate award of the night, the Chair’s Award, sponsored by Swansea University, which recognises people working across teams and boundaries for the benefit of others.

The winner of this award, for the second time in the evening, was Ed O’Brian for being an outstanding professional with an incredible commitment and dedication for End of Life Care.

The final award, the Chief Executive’s award, recognised those who consider the needs of others. This year the award was sponsored by the Ortus Group, and was given to Call Handler, Melissa Jones. Melissa demonstrated that she was trusting, honest and gave support to help others.

The Trust would like to thank main award sponsors The Ortus Group, co-sponsors Swansea University's College of Human and Health Sciences and category sponsors, Vodafone, Ridler Webster, the GMB Union and Lawray Architects as well as the staff at Brangwyn Hall for hosting the event.

You can download pictures from the evening by visiting our Facebook page.

Notes to editor:
For more information, please call the Communications team was.communications@wales.nhs.uk