Island health care heroes announced

Caring health professionals from across the Western Isles have been shortlisted for two national accolades at the Scottish Health Awards 2011.

Ishbel Walker from Uist and Barra Hospital and Well North Outer Hebrides Team at Stornoway Health Centre have fought off stiff competition from around the country, to secure their place at the final award ceremony in Edinburgh.

Radiographer - a worthy finalist

The judges selected Senior Radiographer, Ishbel Walker as a worthy finalist to acknowledge her long standing contribution to serving the island communities of North and South Uist, Grimsay, Benbecula, Berneray, Eriskay, Vatersay and Barra.

Ishbel has worked as a single-handed Radiographer in the Western Isles for over 11 years and provides routine and emergency services to approximately 6,000 patients.

Her continued commitment enables specialist visiting consultant clinics in Benbecula and she provides on-call services seven days a week to help some of the most critically sick and injured patients.

Travelling on country roads, often in adverse weather conditions, Ishbel provides vital diagnostic services in life-threatening situations. To acknowledge her invaluable contribution to rural health services, Ishbel is shortlisted for the Unsung Hero Award.

Team’s dedication shines through

The Well North and Outer Hebrides team at Stornoway Health Centre will also be acknowledged for their success at developing an innovative and dedicated screening programme to reduce cardiovascular disease in the Western Isles.

The team is in the running for the Healthy Living Award after the judges were impressed by their dedication to delivering an innovative and highly effective screening service to the population of the Western Isles on a purpose-built mobile unit.

Through the delivery of targeted screening in local communities, the team make a significant contribution towards improving the health and wellbeing of the population of the Western Isles.

The project has met and exceeded expectations in many areas by providing healthy lifestyle advice to over 6,000 clients.

Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Cities Strategy, Nicola Sturgeon said: “Our ambition is to deliver the highest quality of healthcare to the people of Scotland, and these awards give us the opportunity to recognise those individuals and teams who are making an outstanding contribution to that ambition.  

Going the extra mile

“All those nominated have gone that extra mile to deliver consistent, reliable and responsive healthcare for everyone.”

“Over 400 nominations were received across the 14 award categories.  Many of these were from patients and the public, and all nominations showcased excellent examples how individuals, teams and local NHS systems are working together with patients, families and carers.”

NHS Western Isles Chief Executive Gordon Jamieson said: “To have been shortlisted for Scottish Health Awards is an incredible achievement for both the Well North Team and Ishbel Walker. I’d like to wish them all the best at the awards ceremony in November, and to personally thank them for their invaluable contribution to sustaining and improving health services in the Western Isles.”

The winners of the Scottish Health Awards 2011 will be announced at a glittering award ceremony on November 10th.