Karen Howell, Chief Executive of Wirral Community Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust, writes for Globe.

IN my last column I talked about how engaging with patients and local people helps to improve our services.

We invite your views on how we’re doing and welcome all feedback whether it’s a concern, complaint or compliment, we learn from it all.

We get hundreds of compliments and letters every month, words of thanks from people we've cared for at home and close to home.

From our community nurse teams, health visitors and school nurses, to our therapists, social workers, walk-in centre nurses and specialist teams, every compliment tells its own story and means so much.

This is why our People's Heart Award, launched here in the Wirral Globe last month, is such a lovely way to say thank you and recognise the work of our health and social care staff.

We invited you, or someone you are close to who had received care or support from our NHS Trust, to say a special thank you and nominate the person or team that looked after you or yours for the 2020 People’s Heart Award.

We had a brilliant response with nominations coming in for a wide range of our community services including; community cardiology, physiotherapy, end of life care, children’s health, infant feeding, community nursing, specialised dental and our DVT service.

And what amazing stories they told!

Stories of compassionate care, lives changed for the better, personalised and responsive support and care tailored to the individual needs of our patients and their families.

Judging this award is kindly done by our elected Public Governors who last week reviewed all your nominations to give us our shortlist for the People’s Heart Award 2020.

It presented an enormous challenge for our judging panel and all the nominees are winners in my eyes!

Our shortlist for this year is:

  • Arun Ayyanan, Highly Specialist Physiotherapist from our MSK Physiotherapy Service
  • Christine Lacy, Children’s Health Promotion Advisor in the Wirral 0-19 Team
  • Shelia Nugent, Macmillan Clinical Nurse Specialist in our End of Life Care Team.

The winner will be announced on Friday March 13 at our annual Heart Awards event.

Providing exceptional and compassionate care is what the NHS strives to do.

Our staff are passionate about helping people to live well and independently and to access care and treatment where they need it.

So these letters of thanks and nominations for awards mean a great deal.

They help recognise and celebrate the exceptional efforts of NHS staff, they allow us to share success and they show that the NHS is valued for the work it does day in day out.

Visit www.wchc.nhs.net after March 13 to see the winners of the Heart Awards 2020.