Vote for hero who’s making health service extra special

Vote: Finalists hoping to be crowned The Star Health Care Hero 2011.
Vote: Finalists hoping to be crowned The Star Health Care Hero 2011.
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THE nominations are in - and now it’s time to vote for your Healthcare Hero!

People are now being urged to vote for the most deserving winner of the award - and here is the shortlist of the 12 potential heroes.

The breast cancer team at the Royal Hallamshire and Weston Park hospitals were nominated for the prize by Rachel Henchley, of Beauchief, who was diagnosed with the condition, aged 41.

The medics have a fast-track system for existing patients who need urgent treatment, and provide comprehensive care for patients, from diagnosis through to surgery and therapy.

Next is neurovascular surgeon Umang Patel, who is based at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital.

He has performed countless life-saving operations, and improved the lives of many patients along with his dedicated team of registrars, consultants, anaesthetists and support staff.

Mr Patel’s name was put forward by Tom Hebdige from Barnsley, after he saved his dad David’s life with a 17-hour operation following a cerebral aneurysm.

The team at the Hallamshire’s P3 haematology ward have been nominated for their work treating patients with cancer and other blood disorders.

Annette Hinchcliffe, from Wybourn, suggested the team after they treated her young son Andrew for leukaemia last year.

During the heavy snow ward staff also worked long hours to ensure their service continued uninterrupted.

Senior occupational therapist Sarah Rodgers, who’s based at the Northern General Hospital, was nominated by Tracey Smith from Crookes for the care she received for a broken wrist.

Tracey said Sarah ‘went the extra mile’ to get her arm moving again, and even spent one appointment making a special wrist splint so the keen cyclist could ride her bike again.

Also up for the award is head and neck cancer nurse Louise Marley, who works in a special unit at the Hallamshire Hospital.

Louise was nominated by Angela Lester from Heeley, whose mum was treated for mouth cancer.

Louise arranged for care to be provided at Angela’s mum’s home rather than in hospital, and even visited her in different wards as her treatment progressed.

Beverley Faye, a community matron in Gleadless and Greenhill has been put forward by Glynis Briddon from Rotherham. Beverley cared for Glynis’s mum while she died of emphysema, increasing her visits from every week to every day when her condition deteriorated.

Care support worker Katie Burling works with elderly people and stroke victims at the Northern General, and was nominated by her colleague Karen Beddoe for the excellent relationship she has with patients and staff and the quality of her work.

Katie gives patients beauty treatments, and prepares meals for people with special diets.

The deep clean teams at the Hallamshire and Northern General were also nominated by a colleague, nurse Patty Hempshall.

The cleaners protect patients from infections such as MRSA, and have been at the forefront of a special control programme for the last five years.

Sheffield’s mortuary technicians at both the Hallamshire and the Northern, were nominated by consultant anaesthetist Andrew Davidson for their behind-the-scenes work helping to increase the number of corneal transplants carried out at the city’s hospitals.

They have taken on extra training to ensure the wishes of those who have died are met, and often have to work in their own time and at unsocial hours.

Meanwhile, lead dental nurse Melanie Smith was nominated by her co-worker Dr Anne Hegarty for her caring approach with patients at the oral medicine clinic in Sheffield’s Charles Clifford Dental Hospital. The Palliative Care Team at the Northern General have been nominated by Alison Allot-Knight for the care they gave to her mother Wendy when she was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2010.

Alison, who describes the team as ‘angels in disguise’ said they always delivered the highest standard of care to her mother throughout the two separate periods she spent on the unit.

She said: “As well as treating her with the utmost dignity and respect during the day to day care such as washing, feeding and dressing, they would also go the extra mile by helping to put her make-up on which always put a smile on her face.”

Next to be nominated is Amanda Flanagan, a support worker at the Northern General Hospital. She was nominated by Joy Price from Stannington for the care she gave Joy’s mother at an extremely traumatic time.

Joy said: “My mother was a patient on the Hadfield 6 ward following a fall. During her stay, her husband and son tragically died within ten days of each other.

“It was a very upsetting time for my mum but Amanda was brilliant in helping her cope.

“No matter how busy the ward was, she always had time to sit down, hold her hand and listen to any worries she had about coping alone after over 60 years of marriage. Amanda’s presence lit up mum’s face and gave her the feeling of having a friend on the ward.”

The winner will be presented with their award in front of hundreds of guests at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals’ annual Thank You Awards ceremony next month.

- Votes must be cast by email. Only one vote per person and email account allowed.

Email us at with Health Care Hero in the subject box – followed immediately by the full name of the person you want to vote for.

In your email text box give your full name, address, phone and any other contact details. But hurry. The deadline for all your votes is Wednesday, October 19, 10am.

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