HARD-WORKING NHS staff enjoyed an evening away from the pressures of the job at a special awards ceremony honouring their achievements over the last year.

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The Staff Recognition Awards ceremony at Oxford Town Hall last week was attended by nearly 300 staff, volunteers, patients’ families, and fundraisers from Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (OUH).

Oxford Mail:

Clinical Team of the Year - JR and West Wing Theatres pictured with Cecelia Gould, Lead Governor

Winners and finalists were selected from each of the award categories, which included individual and team prizes designed to celebrate the contribution they had made to patient care and working life at the trust throughout 2019.

Categories included doctor and nurse/midwife of the year, as well as prizes for best clinical team of the year.

The ceremony was supported by Oxford Hospitals Charity and hosted by BBC Oxford’s Geraldine Peers.

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Doctor of the Year -Dr Chris Kearns pictured with Professor Meghana Pandit, Chief Medical Officer

Winners and finalists were picked from more than 1,500 nominations by a panel of staff and patients.

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Dr Karen Steinhardt, Clinical Lead for Children’s Psychological Services, won the Leader of the Year award.

Her nominator said: “Karen’s door is always open. She welcomes everybody to give an opinion, and listens too.

“She is probably the most committed and dedicated person I know in terms of her desire to develop and achieve the best possible outcomes for children.”

Oxford Mail:

Leader of the Year, Dr Karen Steinhardt, pictured with Dr Bruno Holthof, Chief Executive Officer

Dr Steinhardt said she was surprised to win and it was 'very exciting' to be nominated in the first place alongside 'such worthy nominees'.

She added: “I think the trust is a great place to work – I’ve been here for 20 years and worked with such wonderful people.

“I think all of our staff really pull together to make sure children and their families get the best possible care. It’s easy to lead a team with the same goals and who are so positive and motivated.”

Oxford Mail:

Patients’ Choice Award (joint winners) -DAFNE (Dose Adjustment for Normal Eating) Team pictured with Professor Sir Jonathan Montgomery, Chair

The Dose Adjustment for Normal Eating (DAFNE) team and Dr Geetha Anand were joint winners of the Patients' Choice Award.

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A nominator for DAFNE, which helps patients with diabetes, said: “They taught us how to understand so many factors and take self-control... it’s all become very easy, straightforward and understandable."

Dr Anand, meanwhile, was described as approachable who always greeted patients 'with a friendly smile'.

Oxford Mail:

Patients’ Choice Award (joint winners) -Dr Geetha Anand pictured with Professor Sir Jonathan Montgomery, Chair

Bex Ponen, Organisational Development Consultant at OUH who organised the awards, said: “It’s been a magical, inspiring event.

It’s given our staff chance to pause and reflect on the fabulous work they do. People have a smile on their face for many months to come, and it gives a boost all-round to the nominees and their teams.”

Professor Sir Jonathan Montgomery, chairman of the trust, said: “I was blown away by our staff and their achievements at the awards. It’s a privilege to work with them all.”

To find out more about the awards visit ouh.nhs.uk/about/staff-recognition.