A prestigious award inspired by Florence Nightingale has been presented to outstanding nurses and midwives. Sixty-three nurses and three midwives from Guy’s and St Thomas’ were presented with the Nightingale Nurse or Nightingale Midwife award at a ceremony held on 10 May.
The accolade celebrates the Trust’s links with the 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’, and since launching in 2017, more than 300 individuals have successfully achieved the award.
Natalie Tiddy, Nightingale Fellowship President Emeritus, presented the latest cohort with the coveted engraved badge and certificate during the Trust’s Nursing and Midwifery Week celebrations.
The event included a pre-recorded message from Dame Judi Dench and a speech by Professor Charlotte McArdle, Deputy Chief Nursing Officer for NHS England. Rohit Sagoo, director of British Sikh nurses, gave the keynote speech.
To be eligible for the award, nurses and midwives have to share supporting statements from their managers and peers showing that they provide outstanding care and act as a role model, and submit evidence and feedback which demonstrates exemplary practice. They must also submit a reflective academic assignment at degree or masters level which is marked and graded by King’s College London.
A posthumous award was given to Zulfikur ‘Zul’ Mawnah, and was collected by his wife. Zul, who was originally from Mauritius, was a charge nurse in cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging at Royal Brompton Hospital.
Chief Nurse Avey Bhatia, who received the Nightingale award last year, said: “Congratulations to all of the new Nightingale award winners. We are incredibly proud of Florence Nightingale’s legacy and these awards named in her honour provide an opportunity to celebrate and develop our fantastic staff.”
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 at Guy’s and St Thomas’, which launched in 2017 to provide a platform for innovation in practice and service development, education and research in nursing and midwifery.