Staff and Volunteers Hounoured in Ambulance Awards

 Friday 30 October 2015

The dedication and commitment of ambulance staff and volunteers in Scotland was recognised in a unique awards ceremony in Edinburgh.  The winners of the annual Scottish Ambulance Service recognition awards were announced from over 120 nominations submitted by their peers and the public.

Phil McAleer, an Area Service Manager based in Hamilton, is this year’s Staff Member of the Year in recognition of his dedication and meticulous planning to ensure the successful and safe transfer of patients to the new Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Glasgow. Phil managed the transfer of patients, some of whom were critically ill, from the Western Infirmary, Victoria Infirmary and Royal Hospital for Sick Children in what was a hugely complex project and the biggest of its kind ever undertaken in Scotland. His commitment and attention to detail ensured that ambulance teams were able to transfer all patients safely to the new hospital, over several weeks, in a flawless operation.

The Service’s Education and Professional Development department, based at Glasgow Caledonian University, and supporting students and staff across the whole country won Team of the Year for exceptional dedication in the continued development of clinical skills, as they trained record numbers of new staff over the last three years. They are always committed to supporting staff and helping them to enhance their skills throughout their career progression and play a critical role in creating a highly professional clinical workforce who save lives every day. 

The Chief Executive’s Special Award recognises a member of staff for making an outstanding contribution to the service and was given to John Lyall, a paramedic in Edinburgh with over 35 years of experience, including air ambulance operations. John is recognised by his peers as an excellent role model who embraces challenges and cares for patients with professionalism and compassion.  Throughout his career with the Service he has been dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of care and is an integral member of the team in Edinburgh, supporting new staff and helping them develop through his mentoring.

Neilston and Uplawmoor Community First Responders won the award for Taking Care to the Patient, which recognises the outstanding achievements of a partner in supporting the Service’s ‘Towards 2020’ strategy. The team has grown to 30 volunteers who work hard to provide a life saving service to their community.  They have raised funding for all of their equipment and last year responded to more than 450 emergencies while the ambulance was on its way, delivering early and sometimes life saving care.

The Chairman’s Patient Safety Award recognises members of staff who consistently go the extra mile to deliver the highest levels of patient safety. This year’s winner is Marcus Wilson, a paramedic in the Special Operations Response Team in Aberdeen, who shows exceptional dedication in a number of areas, all in his own time. Marcus is a dementia ambassador for social services in Scotland and regularly gives his time voluntarily to teach the “Dementia Friends” Alzheimer’s initiative in the community. He voluntarily teaches CPR across the region as well as giving first aid instruction to inmates at Peterhead Prison. In addition to volunteering for the Red Cross, Marcus gives his time with the NHS Grampian Patient Safety group on sepsis and has hosted several awareness events in Aberdeen Royal Infirmary and the Health Village.

The Scottish Ambulance Service Values Award was presented to paramedics Harry Saddiq and Yvonne Young, based in Douglas, in recognition for their excellent work with Islamic community groups throughout Glasgow and Lanarkshire. They regularly run workshops in their own time to promote awareness and understanding of the Service within the Islamic community and their efforts have also been recognised by the Police Muslim Association.

Pauline Howie, Chief Executive, Scottish Ambulance Service, said:
“Our staff and volunteers deliver around the clock care for patients across Scotland in often very challenging situations. These awards recognise their commitment and dedication, whether on the frontline or in a supporting role, which make a difference to people’s lives every day. All of the nominees were nominated by their peers and the public and they are an absolute credit to the Scottish Ambulance Service.  Their willingness to go the extra mile for patients and colleagues on a daily basis is both humbling and inspirational.”

See images of the event