Kate Granger, a doctor and the founder of the successful “Hello, my name is” campaign, which encourages medical staff to introduce themselves to patients, won a Special Achievement Award at The BMJ Awards 2016 in London on 5 May.
Granger, a consultant in geriatric medicine at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, whose experiences as a patient with cancer led to the campaign, was the first recipient of this one-off award. Her campaign now has 42 000 Twitter followers globally.
Granger was joined by doctors and teams who have excelled in their fields, such as anaesthesia, diabetes, cancer care, cardiology, clinical leadership, dermatology, and gastroenterology.
Competition for this year’s BMJ Awards, now in their eighth year, was fierce, with 320 entries and a rigorous selection process, which included presentations by shortlisted teams to a panel of judges that featured patient representatives for the first time. The Cardiology Team of the Year was awarded to the University Hospital of Wales for improving antenatal detection of congenital heart defects by better training of sonographers. Orhan Uzun, a consultant paediatric cardiologist, said, “Before 2008, we were losing 10% of the babies born with transposition of the great arteries, which was not acceptable. Since 2008 we haven’t lost a single baby.” The judges noted that the project had “clear potential for wider uptake to improve patient outcomes.”
The Gastroenterology Team award went to Rebecca Fitzgerald and her colleagues at University Cambridge Hospitals Partnership for developing a simple diagnostic test for oesophageal cancer, called the Cytosponge, which the patient swallows, thereby avoiding the need for endoscopy. Fitzgerald said, “We’re now launching a final study in primary care to make sure the health economics add up. Then we’ll take it to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and say, ‘Here it is.’”
Doctors at Barnet Hospital in north London won the Cancer Care Team award by providing a simple treatment for pneumothorax, which has often been a deterrent to performing lung biopsies for diagnosing lung cancer. If patients had a pneumothorax the Heimlich valve could be inserted before they were discharged, thereby avoiding a hospital stay.
Sam Hare, a consultant thoracic radiologist, explained, “We’re biopsying the patients other hospitals say no to, with smaller cancers deep in the lung or with bad lung function because of smoking. We’ve had a 73% improvement in curative surgical resection rates in the past three years.”
The UK Research Paper of the Year was awarded to researchers at Edinburgh University for their work in oxygen saturation targets in infants with bronchiolitis. Their study, published in the Lancet,1 showed that infants treated with 90% oxygen saturation do better than those treated with 94% saturation, reducing the time needed on supplemental oxygen from 27.6 hours to 5.7 hours.
The Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Anthony Costello for his contribution to improving health for women and children around the world. Born in southeast London, Costello trained as a paediatrician. In 1983 he worked in Nepal with the Save the Children Fund and is now head of maternal, newborn, child, and adolescent health at the World Health Organization.
Fiona Godlee, editor in chief of The BMJ, said that Costello “has been a powerhouse of clinical and public health research and advocacy on behalf of women and children. He is admired as a teacher and advocate of patient involvement in research and delivery of care.”