27 July 2023

Cooma trio among those recognised for excellence in annual health district awards

| Gail Eastaway
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Winners at last week's health awards.

Cooma health award winner Rochelle Woolfe (centre) with Batemans Bay Hospital deputy director of nursing Rebekah O’Reilly and board member Terry Clout. Photos: Kyal Dorsett.

Southern NSW Local Health District (SNSWLHD) held its annual Excellence Awards ceremony at Bay Pavilions in Batemans Bay this week.

Awards were presented to more than 160 individuals and teams across 20 categories.

Chief executive Margaret Bennett said the high standard and diversity of nominees and award winners showcased the district’s commitment to providing excellence in care across all services and locations.

“More than 250 nominations were submitted from across a variety of health facilities, work areas and specialties, making the 2023 Excellence Awards more representative of our southern workforce than ever before,” she said.

“The Excellence Awards ceremony is an uplifting celebration of innovation and achievement. I extend my congratulations and thanks to all nominees and award winners, who work so diligently in service of our community.”

Cooma's Donna Saddler has been rewarded for her health work/

Cooma’s Donna Saddler has won a local health award:

Three Cooma health workers, Donna Saddler, Matthew Stephenson and Rochelle Woolfe, were among the winners.

Donna, the nurse unit manager at Cooma Community Health Service, shared the Care and Kindness Award with Sam Mundi, a clinical nurse educator from Queanbeyan.

Rochelle, the nurse unit manager, operating theatres, shared the Elevate Award with Rebekah O’Reilly, deputy director of nursing at Batemans Bay Hospital.

Quality improvement and patient safety were the focus of the awards, with new categories also recognising achievements in innovation, collaboration and sustainability.

Michael Stephenson is a health award winner.

Matthew Stephenson with his health award.

A highlight of the ceremony was the unveiling of the inaugural Dr Allan Hawke AC Outstanding Leadership Award, honouring the legacy of SNSWLHD’s late board chair.

Matthew Stephenson, the manager of patient flow, waitlist and whole of health program, was the first recipient of the prestigious new award.

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Other award winners from across the region included:

Board Chair Award
Winner: Jenni Hudson, Mental Health School-Link Coordinator.
Location: District-wide (Jenni is based in Yass).

Collaborative Staff Member of the Year
Winner: Dr Nathan Oates, Anaesthetist.
Location: South East Regional Hospital, Bega.

Emerging Leader Award
Winner: Nicole Jorgensen, Aboriginal Mental Health Clinician.
Location: Goulburn.

Closing the Gap Award
Winner: Emma Woolley, Media and Communications Officer.
Location: District-wide.

Team Awards
Chief Executive’s Award
Winner: Safe Care Project.
Location: District-wide.

Transforming Patient Experience Award
Winner: Rural Kids GPS — Paediatric Care Coordination.
Location: District-wide.

Volunteer of the Year
Winner: Eurobodalla Palliative Care Volunteers.
Location: Eurobodalla.

Patient Safety First
Winner: Dental Unit Waterlines Project – Reducing Biofilm.
Location: District-wide.

Excellence in the Provision of Mental Health Services
Winner: South East Regional Hospital (SERH) Mental Health Inpatient Unit.
Location: South East Regional Hospital, Bega.

People and Culture Award
Winner: Respecting the Difference, Be the Difference.
Location: District-wide.

Patient Safety Award
Winner: Meredith Fleming, Clinical Lead, Adult Community Mental Health.
Location: Cooma Hospital and Health Service.

Keeping People Healthy
Winner: Multicultural Healthy Eating Program.
Location: District-wide.

Delivering Integrated Care Award
Winner: Transitional Aged Care Program (TACP) – It’s What Matters, Not What is the Matter. Location: District-wide.

Excellence in Aboriginal Healthcare
Winner: Trusted Locals Encourage Screening.
Location: Goulburn, Queanbeyan and Moruya.

Health Research and Digital Innovation
Winner: Antenatal Care Research Collaboration.
Location: District-wide.

Environmental Sustainability
Winner: Queanbeyan Hotel Services Food Waste Project.
Location: Queanbeyan.

ACI Award for Rural Innovation
Winner: Golden Angels Spreading Their Wings.
Location: District-wide.

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