TRIBUTES have been paid to the stars of nursing and midwifery at an emotional awards ceremony in the North-East. The County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust presented a host of awards to the “unsung heroes” of the profession at the annual ceremony to mark International Nurses Day recently. One of the main awards of the night went to midwife Nicola Abbot, who was nominated for the outstanding care shown to a couple who had lost two baby boys in tragic circumstances. Nicola was described as “a midwife unlike any other” in the citation, which was read out by event compere, the trust’s lead nurse for special projects, Paul Latimer. The unidentified couple added: “We can’t thank Nicola enough.

She gave us such precious memories and what she did was beyond the call of duty. We will never forget her.” The trust’s chairman Professor Paul Keane praised all the winners and nominees, saying: “Every day, I am in awe of staff who I see going the extra mile to make a real difference to the quality of patients’ lives and it is a privilege to recognise their contribution.” Chief executive Sue Jacques said: “Our staff are our biggest asset and it is really important to celebrate the enormous dedication and skills they demonstrate across County Durham and Darlington.” The Trust’s Executive Director of Nursing, Noel Scanlon, who helped present the awards, added: “We are very lucky to have such outstanding staff, who are real role models in so many ways. The winners and all those nominated should be very proud indeed.”


Special Recognition Awards: Community staff nurse Jean Dunn; Outpatients Sister Tracy Murphy; Ward Manager Cath Scott; Community Midwife Katie Taggart; Paediatric Bedwetting and Constipation Nurse Specialist Kathleen Dawson; Health Care Assistant Tracy Gibson. Travel Award Winners: Louise De Luen and Debra Hope, who are visiting Sweden to develop maternity service practices. Outstanding Mentor Awards: Neonatal Unit Nurse Natalie Jarvis; Ward Sister Trina Howe. Nursing Team Award: Cardiac Arrest Prevention Team. Patient Choice Award: Midwife Nicola Abbot.