Now in their 12th year, the Advanced Healthcare Awards (AHA) were held on April 20 at the Chelsea Harbour Hotel in London.
Mairiead and her colleagues Lisa Logan and Stephen McGlashan are biomedical scientists on the microbiology team at Victoria Hospital in Kirkcaldy and are members of the Institute of Biomedical Science (IBMS).
The team won The Scottish Government’s AHA award for Driving improvement, delivering results. The team was nominated after establishing a rapid flu testing system to reduce the time taken to identify patients with flu.
This testing system would allow nursing staff to confirm whether a patient has flu in as little as 30 minutes, where previously it would have taken up to 24 hours.
Mairiead said, “We are grateful to our wider microbiology team supporting this project and also very much appreciate the positive responses from our nursing colleagues in both the Emergency Department and the Infection Control Team to our initiative. Without the buy-in from the nursing staff using the near patient testing it would not have been the success it has been.”
Stephen said: “From my point of view we are delighted to receive this award as it reflects the hard work the entire department does every day.
“Not only did this project demonstrate this but it also showed that we can break down traditional barriers and work out with our own silos. In addition to the effort made by the microbiology department we could not have succeeded without the engagement and enthusiasm of A&E, acute admissions and infection control staff. It is gratifying that what we see as the day job is acknowledged as exceptional by our peers.”
Lisa added: “The major benefit I have recognised both personally and for our laboratory team, has been the close working relationships developed with the numerous NHS Fife staff and departments, especially the Emergency Department nurses, during the implementation and throughout the running of the point of care flu project and for me that was a key factor in our team winning this award. I hope we continue these working relationships and expand them even further.”
IBMS President Alison Geddis said: “I am delighted that the microbiology team at NHS Fife received this award. It is wonderful to see our members receiving recognition for their exceptional work, and they are a credit to the profession.”