10 Nov 2015
Edward Vandi, a Broadmoor Hospital nurse who spent months in Sierra Leone fighting the Ebola outbreak, has been named the Pride of Reading Health Worker of the Year.
Edward was stationed at the Ebola treatment centre in Port Loko, where his medical skills and his ability to speak the Temne dialect made him an invaluable part of the team.
Speaking at the award ceremony on Friday, Edward said: “It is actually great to win this award because it recognises what the NHS has done for some of the most vulnerable people in the world. I am still reliving the images in my head but today is helping me. And it’s recognition that at least we are doing something to help others and not just thinking of ourselves.”
Edward, who is on a career break from Broadmoor, will fly back to Sierra Leone afterwards to continue his work developing mental health services for Ebola survivors and families of those who have died.
He has also been shortlisted for a Nursing Times Award, and will be attending the awards ceremony, which showcases innovations improving nurse-led care, on 12 November at Grosvenor House Hotel. He will be joined by clinical research officer Sarah Gregory, who has been invited to the ceremony because of her contribution to a training programme that was shortlisted for an award.
Sarah, based at the clinical trials facility in Lakeside, worked with 20 other researchers and nurses across the country to build a training programme to teach NHS nurses and researchers how to properly assess patients with dementia for research studies.
The work, coordinated by the National Institute for Health Research’s clinical research network, will enable the NHS to demonstrate to pharmaceutical companies the availability of competent researchers to undertake studies. The team has been shortlisted for an award in the clinical research category.
Sarah said: “It’s been fantastic to have been part of this programme over the last couple of years and we’ve implemented some great new training sessions within our team too. I feel privileged to be attending the awards alongside my colleagues.”