Epsom-and-St-Heliers-award-winning-Ophthalmology-Team

Epsom-and-St-Heliers-award-winning-Ophthalmology-Team

A multi-disciplinary team of specialists from the eye units at Epsom and St Helier hospitals has been recognised with a national award for delivering “inspiring and remarkable care” to patients with glaucoma related eye conditions.

The consultant-led team were named as winners in the Best Ophthalmology Team category at the Bayer Ophthalmology Honours awards in recognition of their entry ‘Making a Difference for Glaucoma Patients: A ‘Can Do’ Approach’, which set out the work done to improve the experience of patients.

The awards were presented at a ceremony hosted by Paralympian and former world record holder in the 800m sprinting event Danny Crates at the Royal College of Surgeons in London.

Anne Linnell, the Consultant Ophthalmologist, explained what has been achieved at the trust in just two years. She said: “We are absolutely delighted to win this award: it shows the fantastic team spirit and ‘can do’ attitude we have here at Epsom and St Helier.

“In 2014 we identified changes that we needed to make to ensure the best possible care is given to our patients. This meant ensuring that they were seen as quickly as possible by the correct consultant; ensuring all decisions were taken by a team of clinicians; to improve the glaucoma service; and reduce cancellations of appointments. The aim of our entry was to offer patients an even more positive experience, and the results we achieved within one year were remarkable.

“To be recognised by other people is gratifying, because I’ll be honest, it has not always been easy and it didn’t happen overnight given the training and development of the non-medical staff. The glaucoma consultants are now seeing those that need to be seen – the high-risk patients, because our multi-disciplinary team approach frees up our critical time.”

The judging criteria for the award included: improvements in patient care; improvements in patients’ experiences and quality of life; improved outcomes and service delivery; service redesign, efficiency and savings to the NHS; clear purpose; supportive policies and evidence of good communication.

Lynn Ring, Advanced Clinical Nurse Specialist, added: “There was an excellent team effort at all levels and across departments. The judges actually congratulated us for achieving such a refreshing and successful result, with several of them commenting that they were inspired to implement similar changes at their hospitals based on what we have done.”

For more information about the Bayer Ophthalmology Honours awards, visit www.ophthalmologyhonours.bayer.co.uk.