Our stars receive awards

Ambulance staff from across the region were recognised at our annual Star Awards which saw hundreds of paramedics, care assistants, dispatchers and health advisors come together for a celebration of outstanding achievement from the past year.

The ceremony was hosted by ITV Granada’s Paul Crone with entertainment from Manchester comedian, Jason Manford and was held at Ribby Hall Village, near Preston on Thursday 25 April.

An ambulance crew from Penrith was presented with the Courage Award for their efforts as they rescued a number of elderly residents after their sheltered accommodation had set alight.

The team arrived before the fire service and went inside the burning building in November to help carry around 30 elderly and vulnerable residents to safety.

Amongst the other winners was an emergency medical dispatcher from Manchester who gave life-saving CPR instructions over the phone for an 18-month-old baby who had stopped breathing after being trapped in a car underwater. Despite the sheer panic at the scene, our dispatcher stayed calm and in control which undoubtedly saved the baby’s life.

Staff from the Emergency Operation Centre in Liverpool were awarded for their strong teamwork which allowed them to overcome technical issues without affecting 999 callers. Other awards were presented for patient transport service, 111 and support staff member of the year as well as special awards presented by our chief executive and chairman.

A special commendation was presented to a team of clinicians who have implemented a life-saving tool for ambulance crews to recognise sepsis, a leading cause of avoidable death which kills more people than breast, bowel and prostate cancer combined.

The team have implemented a sepsis screening tool as well as standardised training for paramedics which is audited and continuously improved.

One project commended on the evening was Restart a Heart Day where NWAS teamed up with Resuscitation Council UK, St John Ambulance and British Red Cross to train over 16,000 young people in essential CPR skills in just one day!

Those who took part in filming ‘999: What’s Your Emergency?’ which aired on Channel 4 last summer received a special award and our Chief Executive presented an award for care and compassion to a group of people who have been fundamental in bringing health and wellbeing for our staff to the forefront of the service’s agenda.

The health and wellbeing champions have done all sorts from relays to craft making; all to remind staff to talk to each other and not to bottle up their feelings. Dan Farnworth, EMT1 and Rich Morton, Paramedic from Blackpool have even been recognised by royalty and ran the London Marathon for the Prince’s Heads Together charity.

The event was funded entirely by the generous donations of Virgin Media Business, Physio Control, MIS Emergency Systems Limited, Flexicare Medical Limited, University of Central Lancashire, Cornerstone Design and Marketing, Continuous Data Print, Manchester United Football Club, Nova Biomedical and Prometheus Medical.