It’s been a good few months for award nominations at St Paul’s. The Bayer Ophthalmology Awards are the latest to be announced, and we were pleased to be told that we’ve been nominated in two categories.
Best Ophthalmology Team
Our corneal crosslinking team has been nominated as Best Ophthalmology Team. They’re the people you meet if you’re a young person requiring treatment for keratoconus; a condition in which the cornea (the clear window at the front of the eye) thins and bulges, so the eye does not focus properly and vision is poor. Crosslinking aims to strengthen the cornea, which slows or stops the disease's progression, but can also improve patients’ vision.
The cross-disciplinary team has done some amazing work recently, not least dealing with a massive increase in referrals from other hospital trusts while still managing to deliver a flexible, patient-focused service. They really go out of their way to ensure that the needs of our patients and families are met, whether that’s providing specialist care for our many patients with Downs’ Syndrome, or delivering treatment around young people’s exams.
Best patient support or education initiative
Our nomination in the Best patient support or education initiative category actually encompasses both of these options. Corinna Swift is our Eye Clinic Liaison Officer, and her job is to support patients, both in St Paul’s and in the wider trust, who are experiencing sight loss. That’s everything from providing information on support services to offering a sympathetic shoulder. Corinna herself is severely sight impaired so knows exactly what her patients go through.
She’s been shortlisted for the work she does in the hospital to help patients. She has devised a new training course aimed at making staff aware of the challenges that sight impaired people face and how they can help them. She has also created a pack for use by patients on wards other than St Paul’s; wards where their sight is an issue but not the reason for their referral. Both of these initiatives have done so much to help people visiting our hospitals.
Corinna has also been shortlisted for the Professional of the Year award at the RNIB Vision Pioneer Awards. Another wonderful achievement.
Both award ceremonies are in December – fingers crossed!