Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh Foundation Trust was announced as the deserving winner of the Cancer Nursing category at the Nursing Times Awards 2018.
In a ceremony held at the prestigious Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London on October 31, nurses and organisations were honoured across 23 categories in a night of recognition dedicated to celebrating exceptional achievement.
And following a rigorous judging process, WWL emerged as the winner of the Cancer Nursing category for the nurse-led accelerated jaundice pathway project.
The judges praised them for their truly nurse-led innovation that has shown demonstrable improvements across the health economy in a cancer group that is associated with poor patient outcomes.
Vicki Stevenson-Hornby, a Macmillan HPB Clinical Nurse Specialists who pioneered the project said: “The Nursing Times Awards Evening was a truly fantastic evening.
“The Cancer Nursing Category was the first of the categories to be announced and I was convinced that one of the other shortlisted candidates would be announced as winner until the judge started to describe the winning entry as a ‘true example of a nurse-led initiative which has made such a huge impact on a patient group which notoriously face such a poor prognosis.’
“To be announced as the winner in the Cancer Nursing category is absolutely fantastic and a moment I will never forget.
“The impact which the nurse-led accelerated jaundice pathway has had in terms of achieving earlier diagnosis of pancreatic and biliary cancers as well as increasing the number of patients eligible for surgery is to be celebrated but, to win a national award means more areas now hear of this initiative and may go on to adopt a similar model of pathway.
“This then has the potential to make a real difference for anyone affected by pancreatic and biliary cancers and a real chance to impact on improving survival rates.
“That is real winning and I am so very proud to be involved with this work.”
The Nurse-Led Accelerated Jaundice Pathway, first implemented in March last year, beat over 700 applications and was chosen among 140 organisations to be in the best of the nursing professions.
The intention of the pathway is to achieve an earlier diagnosis of pancreatic cancer with the aim of more patients being eligible for potentially curative surgery.
And as pancreatic cancer is notoriously diagnosed at a late stage, when it is often too late to offer the potentially curative surgery, survival rates have seen no significant improvement for almost 50 years.
By trialling this pathway, which may result in quicker access to diagnostics and may achieve earlier diagnosis, possible treatment options may be opened up.
Editor of Nursing Times, Steve Ford, said: “The evening always fills me with a really positive feeling, despite the challenges that may be facing the wider health sector.
“As ever, our awards entrants set a very high bar and demonstrated what great care and innovation can be achieved by nurses, often with few resources other than a really good idea and the determination to see it through.
“The expert panels that I spoke to during the judging process in September consistently told me about the high quality and inspirational nature of the entries they were given.”