Sarah Fox, Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement Officer, and Anita Davies, Research Nurse, have been chosen as finalists for two different award categories. They have been selected from over 200 nominations including staff from the regions hospital trusts and primary care centres.
The award winners will be revealed during a black tie ceremony at the Radisson Blu Edwardian Manchester hotel on the evening of Thursday 7 November 2019.
Sarah is one of three finalists within the Best Public Engagement Contribution category. This award aims to recognise individuals that ensure research is being done with members of the public, rather than ‘to’ them or ‘for’ them.
Sarah said, “It’s amazing to have been nominated, I’m specifically glad that public engagement and involvement is recognised for the vital role it plays in all aspects of healthcare and research.”
Sarah has a background in science communication and academic research, and is particularly passionate about co-production and dementia research. For the past year, she has been working at the Dementia Research Centre based at GMMH.
“Dementia research is so very important since the condition impacts so many lives across the world. Not every study leads to a breakthrough but every one brings us that much closer to the work which will.
“I’m really proud that our team were involved in the recent success of Biogen’s Aducanumab study and I’m quietly hopeful that this may be a game changer in the field.”
Ross Dunne, Consultant Psychiatrist for GMMH, based at North Manchester General Hospital, and Sarah’s manager, said: “Her approach is always inclusive and person-centred, including people living with dementia as much as possible in her awareness-raising activities.”
Sarah also said of fellow GMMH nominee: “Anita is the glue which helps hold the rest of the team together and she is exceedingly passionate and compassionate in her work with patients and their families.”
Anita is up for Research Nurse of the Year, alongside four other finalists. This category recognises nurses who have made significant contributions to research, recruiting participants, collaborating with research teams and striving for the best despite setbacks.
Anita said: “I was in disbelief when I first found out that I had been nominated. I really regard this as a nomination for all my research colleagues. We all work so hard to bring research opportunities to our service users and it’s rewarding to be recognised.”
Anita has been a Research Nurse for 10 years, and over the last eight, she has been involved in recruiting and delivering dementia and mild cognitive impairment (MCI) studies. She is currently the study coordinator for the EPAD LCS (European Prevention of Alzheimer’s Dementia Longitudinal Cohort Study).
Some recent positive feedback from a participant of her study highlighted the “caring team of experts, every one of whom has helped to make us feel more confident about the future”.
Anita said: “To receive this feedback is so incredibly rewarding, and highlights the positive benefits gained from being involved in research. This makes all our team efforts so worthwhile – and demonstrates why we are so passionate about the role research plays within our Trust.”
More than 200 nominations were received across the 12 awards categories, with submissions coming from all 14 of the Greater Manchester trusts, primary care, academia and other local partners.