IN ONE week finalists in the South Wales Argus Health and Care Awards will be celebrating their achievements at a presentation event.

The Best Patient and Public Involvement Award, sponsored by United Welsh, is one of the categories which will be awarded.

The award recognises the work of organisations putting patients first and involving members of the public, patients and their carers and families in developing and evaluating health services, which is an integral to ensuring care is high quality and patient focused.

Based in Caerphilly, United Welsh is a leading developer of homes, providing and managing more than 5,600 properties, including homes for people with a range of support needs, while employing more than 300 people in South Wales.

Richard Mann, the group director of operations at United Welsh, said: “We passionately believe that involving patients in their care and treatment will lead to more high-quality outcomes and in turn, patients’ experiences will help service providers to make better decisions.

“We are really looking forward to hearing the inspirational stories of those who are making a real difference in the sector.”

There were a large amounts of nominees for the award, and three were chosen as finalists.

St Joseph’s Hospital’s Patient Support Service is one of the finalists.

Observing how anxious and fearful some patients feel when admitted for surgery and their vulnerability when discharged prompted the formation of the service at the hospital.

The service provides patient centred care from the point of diagnosis through to recovery. It is also provided at a level required by each individual patient.

As well as support the patient support sister chairs quarterly patient focus groups to gather feedback.

Another group who have made it to the final are The Robins Volunteers.

The Age Cymru Gwent service operates within the St. Woolos and Royal Gwent Hospitals in Newport and is a team of 60 volunteers working nine wards.

One of the reasons they were nominated was for their work with older patients who are sometimes in hospital for months. They often feel isolated and vulnerable and some seldom receive visitors.

Between April 2016 and 2017 there were 2,018 active Robins in service, who provided 8,164 hours of voluntary support.

The third finalists are a partnership between Torfaen People First, a self-advocacy group run by and for people with learning disabilities, and Barod CIC, a co-op and community interest company who aim to make public and private sector services accessible for everybody.

They worked together to plan research an event for 130 people where research was conducted with carers, parents and service providers to discover what could be done for the future.

This research then resulted in four new projects being established including establishing safe spaces across Gwent, a jobs project to help people get employed, a digital connection scheme and have launched a Gwent Charter.

The winner will receive their award at a special presentation evening at Chepstow Racecourse on October 19.

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