The Only National Awards For Non-Medical / Non-Clinical NHS Staff & Volunteers
Individual or Team Nomination?
In these challenging times, nominators were asked to show how the nominee had demonstrated the following qualities:
- Exceptional work ethic - going above and beyond their job description, especially in the past 12 months.
- Outstanding achievement/s in work or outside of the organisation where relevant.
- Drive for innovation and proactive leadership in these challenging times.
- High level of interpersonal skills, such as kindness, empathy, loyalty and thoughtfulness to staff and patients.
- A resilience considering Covid to their role and to the health and wellbeing of their colleagues.
Nominee's story :
I would like to nominate the Occupational Health Department for an Unsung Hero award for their continued leadership, dedication and commitment to ensuring Portsmouth University Hospital staff’s wellbeing needs have been met through a challenging year for all.
Prior to the Covid 19 response, the Occupational Health Department already focused on keeping staff well at work, both physically and mentally, and provided that support to ~8000 staff. The focus has always been to provide a healthy and safe work environment and the demand to the team’s skills and expertise was heightened by the Covid 19 response. As a result of the pandemic, the team experienced work-based changes such as:
1. Staff support line – the Trust set up a dedicated hub to act as a centralised communication for staff to report absences and seek advice. Occupational Health also support this function 08:00-18:00 7 days a week
2. Covid 19 testing site – the Occupational Health building was used as a testing site which meant the department lost half of its working space
3. Covid risk assessments for all PHU staff – this included BAME risk assessments. Some of the conversations were often challenging and staff received verbal abuse if they did not meet the criteria for shielding/clinically extremely vulnerable
4. An increase in the number of management referrals to the team, especially during the second wave
The department are the initial point of contact for advice for all staff and this was notable as Government guidelines change; often daily at the start of the pandemic and travel advice changed with countries moving to the “Red list” with quarantine regulations. Wellbeing sessions / debrief/ offload sessions have been offered Trust wide to support individuals and teams and the department have employed dedicated Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) support.
Despite the additional workload, the team have continued to provide high quality care and services despite facing their own staff changes. The health and wellbeing of PHU staff has remained the departments top priority and they have continued to run several wellbeing events to support various national events e.g. World Men’s Health Day, Healthy Eating week and World Mental Health Day. The team have not once complained with the additional pressure during COVID and are an incredible asset to the PHU family.