Innovative Health Science project wins a Welsh Language Award
It was announced this week that a team from Swansea University's School of Health Science fought off stiff competition to win a Welsh Language in Healthcare Award.
The awards, which are organised by the Welsh Language Unit of the Department of Health and Social Services at the Welsh Assembly Government, were presented during the annual Welsh Language in Healthcare Conference held at City Hall, Cardiff.
The Welsh Language in Healthcare Conference and Awards Ceremony 2008 – ‘Learning from Others’, acknowledge the effort and commitment shown by individuals towards the Welsh language in seven different categories from a number of areas in healthcare.
The Health Science team from Swansea University nominated their eWard project in the Education category.
This prize is awarded to the Higher Education Institute or Further Education Institute that has made the greatest effort to improve bilingual provision in healthcare through education.
Carwen Earles, who nominated the project, explains further, “Our eWard project is an electronic learning package designed to help nursing and other healthcare students develop their decision-making and care-planning skills that play a key role in the care of their patients.”
This innovative project is designed to compliment traditional forms of education for healthcare students by teaching different skills to the hands-on practice that students develop in clinical suits and on placements in hospitals or the community.
Carwen added, "After receiving money from the Centre for Welsh Medium Higher Education, we used eWard to develop extra Welsh medium learning opportunities in order to support our Welsh speaking students. Over the past year School of Health Science lecturers, e learning staff, NHS Trust colleagues and students have collaborated to develop this Welsh eWard project."
The team, consisting of Carwen Earles, Mike Tait, Fran Thornton and Mary Paget amongst others, believe that their eWard project benefits Welsh speaking patients as it creates confidence in students’ ability to deliver care within the Welsh language.
Carwen added, "We are delighted to have now received national recognition for the excellent work the team has done for the benefit of our students. The £1,000 prize money will be put towards the next step in developing Welsh language within the curriculum."
Speaking prior to the event, Welsh Assembly Government Deputy Minister for Social Services, Gwenda Thomas, said: “I would like to congratulate those that have been short-listed for an award as a result of their commitment and enthusiasm to ensuring that we continue to move in the right direction and provide a truly bilingual service to our patients and their families.”
Welsh Language Board Chief Executive, Meirion Prys Jones, said: "There is much still to do in developing quality Welsh medium services for patients throughout Wales, and these awards are both a valuable incentive and an excellent way of sharing the varied and creative ways organisations from all sectors are meeting that challenge."
For more information on the School of Health Science visit the School's website.