Western Isles heart team pick up prestigious nursing awards

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The cardiac nurse team from NHS Western Isles have been presented with two prestigious British Heart Foundation Alliance Awards in recognition of their vital work supporting local heart patients.

The team scooped two awards out of a possible six open to nursing teams across the whole of the UK, presented at the recent British Cardiovascular Society Conference in Manchester.

The awards aim to recognise staff and organisations (funded or supported by the BHF) that have shown particular excellence in cardiovascular care over the last year.

The Western Isles team was rewarded in the Integrated Care category, and they also picked up the top award for Team of the Year.

The Team of the Year Award went to the Western Isles Cardiac Rehabilitation Team, based in Stornoway and Benbecula, made up of nurses, physiotherapists, and experts in diet and exercise. They have built up a close-knit and highly effective service over the past few years, offering preventative services to local people at high risk of heart disease or stroke as well as those who already have cardiovascular disease.

The team work in partnership with patients and their families to develop an individual programme, including the most appropriate medication and support with lifestyle changes.

The NHS Western Isles BHF Cardiac Specialist Nursing Team received the Integrated Care Award, recognising the high quality, integrated services they provide while working in a remote and rural area, with no cardiologist support. They provide heart failure and cardiac rehabilitation services, a Rapid Access Chest Pain Clinic, palliative care and a new service to identify families with the genetic condition familial hypercholesterolaemia, which can cause sudden and severe heart attacks if undiagnosed.

Debra Vickers, Lead Nurse for Cardiac Services, said: “I am delighted that the Cardiac Rehabilitation Team and the Cardiac Nursing Team have been recognised in this way.

“These teams are made up of caring and compassionate people across different professions in health and social care and C-NES sports and health, working together as a joint team with a single aim: to develop their services in order to improve the care and support they provide.

“We would have been pleased to win an award in either category, but to win both is overwhelming. I would like to thank the BHF and NHS Western Isles for their support of our cardiac services over the past nine years.”