Falkirk’s star health workers are in line for top awards

Celebration time at the opening of the Woodlands Resource Centre at Falkirk Community Hospital four years ago - now 20 members of the centre's mental health support nurses are in the frame for a top award.
Celebration time at the opening of the Woodlands Resource Centre at Falkirk Community Hospital four years ago - now 20 members of the centre's mental health support nurses are in the frame for a top award.

Four Falkirk health professionals and a hard-working nursing team have been named as finalists in this year’s Scottish Health Awards.

To gain the distinction they were assessed by a panel of NHS Scotland representatives and Scottish Government officials, and will now find who has won on November 14.

The Falkirk contenders are - Tracy Binnie from the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) at Stirling Community Hospital, who has been nominated for the Therapist Award.

Tracy has been praised for her innovative work with Falkirk Football Group, a team for children with autism which is run in partnership with Falkirk Community Football Foundation.

She is also involved with Summer Forest Schools, which offers mindfulness, den building and other outdoor crafts and games. Meanwhile the Primary Care Mental Health Nurse Team from Woodlands Resource Centre is in the running for for the Care for Mental Health Award.

The group of around 20 nurses working in GP surgeries across Forth Valley offers additional assistance to patients who are looking for mental health support.

Wendy Handley from Falkirk Community Hospital is in the running for the Healthier Lifestyle Award, for her efforts to help young adults in custody in Forth Valley.

She aims to improve their health and wellbeing by increasing knowledge and understanding and providing essential life skills.

Karen MacFarlane from the Neonatal Unit at Forth Valley Royal Hospital is nominated for both the Leader of the Year Award and the Nurse Award.

A key focus for Karen since she became senior charge nurse has been an effort to involve parents in the care of their babies in the neonatal unit at Larbert’s Forth Valley Royal Hospital

Under her leadership the neonatal unit was the first to make the Bliss Baby Charter Pledge of Improvement, and its aim is to be the first unit in Scotland to achieve full accreditation.

Also nominated for the Leader of the Year Award is Jennifer Borthwick from Psychological Services at Falkirk Community Hospital.

She has been in the role for five years, and was also recently appointed clinical director of substance misuse services.

The Scottish Health Awards pay tribute to the NHS staff, support workers, volunteers and specialist teams who go above and beyond to provide exceptional care and support to patients and their families.

Jeane Freeman MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, said: “Every year the Scottish Health Awards provide an important opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the work of the really dedicated individuals and teams who deliver high quality health and care services to the people of Scotland.

“We continue to make a difference to people’s lives thanks to our dedicated staff, working across the NHS, partners in health and social care, voluntary organisations and more.

“Each achievement and success wouldn’t have happened without their hard work and commitment and I’d want to thank them for that.”