Next generation of Nightingales honoured with professional award

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Nightingale award winners celebrate next to the Mary Seacole Memorial Statue at St Thomas'

Exceptional nurses and midwives from Guy’s and St Thomas’ have been celebrated with a unique professional award inspired by Florence Nightingale.

The Nightingale Nurse and Nightingale Midwife Award was presented to 72 nurses and 4 midwives who now have the honour of being known as a ‘Nightingale Nurse’ or ‘Nightingale Midwife’.

Named in honour of pioneering nurse Florence Nightingale, who established her first professional nursing school at St Thomas’ Hospital in 1860, the award is unique to Guy’s and St Thomas’. Since launching in 2017, more than 450 individuals have successfully achieved the award.

To receive it, nurses and midwives have to provide evidence from their managers, peers and people they care for of their outstanding practice and how they daily demonstrate the Trust’s values. They also have to complete a programme of academic work credited by King’s College London.

The award ceremony included messages of support from NHS England’s Nichole McIntosh, Regional Head of Nursing and Midwifery - Deputy Chief Nurse Workforce, Training and Education Directorate, and Acosia Nyanin, Deputy Chief Nursing Officer for England, as well as Dr Christine Taylor, President of The Nightingale Fellowship and Vice Patron of The Florence Nightingale Museum.

The latest cohort were presented with the coveted engraved badge and certificate during the Trust’s Nursing and Midwifery Week celebrations.

Daniel Olatunbosun, a senior staff nurse in the cardiology department at St Thomas’ Hospital, received the Nightingale nurse award. He said:

The whole process and the training has been amazing and I’ve built so much confidence.

Back home in Nigeria we studied about Florence Nightingale and St Thomas’ Hospital’s role in nursing, so to be able to practice here and get this prestigious award is a dream come true – I’m really proud.

Ana Araujo has worked at the Trust for more than 20 years and is a matron for the @home service in Lambeth. After receiving the Nightingale nurse award, she said:

I’m extremely proud of the job that we do and I want to inspire others to continue this legacy. Being a Nightingale means to follow the ethos of Florence Nightingale – to look after people with integrity and compassion.

Avey Bhatia, Chief Nurse at Guy’s and St Thomas’, said: “Florence Nightingale’s legacy continues to be the very essence of nursing so this prestigious award is a great way for us to develop and support our exceptional nurses and midwives. A huge congratulations to our next generation of Nightingales who have helped to deliver outstanding, compassionate care to patients across our hospitals and local communities.”

In the past, nurses who trained at the Nightingale nursing school and worked at St Thomas’ Hospital for more than a year received a special blue badge and were known as ‘Nightingales’. This was phased out after the school was transferred to King’s College London with the last badge being issued in 1996.

The Nightingale Nurse and Nightingale Midwife Award is part of the Nightingale Academy, a centre for professional development for registered and unregistered nurses and midwives within the Trust. The academy aims to help and support staff to develop their leadership potential, and runs a variety of programmes, workshops and masterclasses.

Contact information

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Email: press@gstt.nhs.uk