Burnley MP Julie Cooper searching for NHS' healthcare heroes

Julie Cooper MP (right) with Ethel Armstrong MBE.
Julie Cooper MP (right) with Ethel Armstrong MBE.
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In celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the NHS, Burnley MP and Shadow Health Minister, Julie Cooper, is calling for people to nominate their 'healthcare heroes' ahead of a special awards programme.

The NHS 70 Parliamentary Awards launched in Parliament last week as part of a raft of programmes celebrating the NHS, with MPs in England who have registered to take part in the awards scheme searching for outstanding nominees who have innovated, impressed, and made a real difference to how the health and care system provides care for patients.

There are ten categories, including a Lifetime Achievement award, to honour those who have devoted their lives or careers to making the NHS better, both for patients and those who work within it.

“The NHS is one of the nation’s most loved institutions, and it is right that we take the opportunity of its 70th birthday to recognise and thank the extraordinary people – the everyday ‘healthcare heroes’ – who are there to guide, support and care for us day in day out," said Julie Cooper MP.

“I know first-hand that there are many examples of excellent care and practice benefitting local people and I would urge those working with and for health and care organisations in the Burnley Constituency, as well as members of the public, to send me further examples they think deserve national recognition," she added.

The launch of the NHS70 Parliamentary Awards was attended by Ethel Armstrong MBE, who was working as a nurse cadet on 5th July 1948, the day the NHS came into being. She worked for more than four decades at various hospitals around the country, mainly in radiography and nursing, and since then for two charities that support current and retired NHS staff.

“The NHS has changed a great deal since Nye Bevin launched it back in 1948, but one thing has stayed the same: the dedication, skill, and compassion of those who work in it and support it in other ways," Ethel said. "The 70th anniversary is an important opportunity to honour those people, past and present, so I welcome Julie Cooper MP’s support for these awards.”

Nominations can be made for the following categories:

- The Excellence in Mental Health Care Award: an individual or team which has developed new and effective services to help people living with mental health problems in the community.

- The Excellence in Cancer Care Award: an individual or team which is going above and beyond to improve outcomes and experience for patients living with and beyond cancer.

- The Excellence in Urgent and Emergency Care Award: an individual or team which has made improvements to how the NHS treats people in life or death situations.

- The Excellence in Primary Care Award: a primary care practitioner or team which is working with patients to help them stay healthy in their own homes.

- The Person-Centred Care Champion Award: an individual or team which has gone furthest towards bringing services together to ensure patients with long-term and multiple conditions get the right care in the right place for them.

- The Healthier Communities Award: an individual or team which has brought different groups together to improve public health in their areas.

- The Care and Compassion Awards: any nurse, midwife, or care staff member of any discipline and in any setting who has used their skills to ensure that patients experience care and compassion.

- The Future NHS Award: an individual or team that has successfully trialled and embedded innovative change(s) to improve care for patients.

- The Patient and Public Involvement Award: to celebrate volunteers who help shape and deliver better services in their area.

- The Lifetime Achievement Award: for an individual who has worked within a health or care setting for 40 years or more, who has left a lasting legacy.

Information on how to nominate is available at www.nhs70awards.co.uk or from the MP’s constituency office at 8 Keirby Walk, Burnley. Nominations close on March 23rd and can be submitted by email julie.cooper.mp@parliament.uk or in person.