IT’S nearly three years since the South Wales Health & Care Awards were last played out in front of a live audience – and it was a night that went very well for Blaenavon Medical Practice.

The Torfaen surgery walked away from Chepstow Racecourse with the GP Practice of the Year crown in 2019, just a few months before everyone’s lives were turned upside down by Covid-19.

After two online ceremonies because of the pandemic, this year’s event, sponsored by the University of South Wales, returns to an in-person occasion on September 29.

And Blaenavon Medical Practice may well be celebrating another GP practice gong, which this time is backed by St Joseph’s Hospital.

Entries opened earlier this month and the winners of three years ago have already been nominated by one of their satisfied patients.

To make it to the awards night, they will need to get the vote of the judges who convene in August to run the rule over all the contenders and choose their finalists for each of the 14 categories.

South Wales Argus:

“In my opinion, the service offered stands out for the level of care they provide, being the heart of the community,” said the person who nominated them.

“Everyone in the GP practice greets you with a smile and friendly word, always going that extra mile when treating you.

“From the first point of telephoning the reception to a doctor’s appointment, if required, the service is always first-class, very professional and friendly, making one feel secure and safe in the health care provided.”

The success in Chepstow stood the Blaenavon team, who have around 6,500 people on their books, in good stead for the battle with Covid that was to come.

“Nearly all of us went to the awards and were sitting around two tables,” said practice manager Maria Potter.

“We numbered about 25 and definitely made a lot of noise, and we all got onto the stage.

“We were honoured and humbled and very happy to have won it. It was a huge boost for morale.”

She added: “The practice has been looking after the people of Blaenavon for many generations, and providing high quality care is something that’s very important to us.”

You can make a nomination for any of the 14 awards at this year’s event by visiting