In July 2018 the NHS celebrated its 70th birthday. A key part of the celebrations were the NHS70 Parliamentary Awards, to identify and highlight innovative and high-quality care across every constituency in England.
The awards thanked NHS staff for their dedication, hard work and commitment by recognising and honouring their achievements.
TEWV nurse consultant and clinical director for older people’s mental health services, Durham and Darlington, Sarah McGeorge was nominated for the Excellence in Mental Health Care Award by Kevan Jones, MP for North Durham.
Mr Jones submitted the nomination after receiving an invite from TEWV Chief Executive, Colin Martin to meet Sarah and discuss her work.
Whilst Sarah sadly wasn’t shortlisted for a national award Mr Jones wanted to recognise her remarkable achievements. He recently visited her at our Lanchester Road Hospital site in Durham to present her with a certificate of recognition for her nomination.
Mr Jones MP said “The NHS is greatly loved and valued by my constituents, and many of them have taken part in its 70th birthday celebrations. I was delighted to nominate Sarah McGeorge in the mental health category of the Parliamentary Awards, in recognition of her tireless work to improve care for patients across the county and beyond.
“I am passionate about the importance of mental health, and believe that it is vital that specialists in this field are acknowledged. It was a pleasure to meet Sarah and the team, and to learn more about developments at the Trust. She is a credit to her profession.”
Sarah has been an older people’s nurse all her career and set up the acute hospital liaison services in Durham and Darlington. She was also one of the first nurse consultants introduced to the Trust in 2000, and worked with nurses, doctors and others to develop new nursing roles and skills. Her work has allowed nurses to undertake first assessments in older people’s services, freeing up doctors time to focus on people with greater needs or complexity.
The model for liaison services Sarah developed has been shared across our organisation which covers a population of approx. 2 million people. Through her work in acute hospital liaison services, she has also demonstrated that it is possible to significantly reduce the length of stay older people had in hospital, whilst ensuring they still receive excellent care.
In addition to her work within the Trust Sarah has written book chapters on older people’s mental health, published journal articles and spoken at conferences locally and nationally.
Commenting on the award Colin Martin, TEWV Chief Executive said “Sarah is an inspiration to so many within mental health. At a national level she has acted as a specialist clinical advisor to CHI, the Healthcare Commission and the CQC. At work she tirelessly supports the development of others by extending their knowledge and skills and supporting people to take on extended roles. She is determined to ensure that our service users have the best possible experience and the highest level of compassionate care and this is placed at the heart of everything she does. Sarah is a true asset to not only our Trust but to mental health nursing in the UK.”
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