When it comes to helping patients prepare themselves for surgery, Rea Pugh-Davies is arguably one of the best around.
The accolade comes courtesy of the Royal College of Nursing as the nurse support worker in Neath Port Talbot Hospital was named Best Nursing Support Worker in this year’s RCNi Awards.
As part of the hospital’s learning disability team Rea has impressed with her ability to focus on her patients, drawing up individual care plans, and has helped to dramatically improve their experience and health.
Rea, who has now started her nurse training on a part-time secondment basis at Swansea University, said: “I am totally speechless, it is a great achievement. I hope to inspire people, to show that no matter what grade or role they are anyone can make a difference.”
A spokeswoman for the judges said: “Rea’s commitment to supporting individuals is exceptional, highlighting that person-centred care was vital and the wards are second to none.
“She attends best interest meetings to ensure she knows people’s likes and dislikes before developing individualised care plans, going the extra mile to print favourite posters to display in theatres or sourcing favourite films or music to alleviate patients’ anxiety.
“Her precision planning and desensitisation saw one patient accept his surgery and make changes to his strict routine that have enhanced his quality of life.”
Joanne Phillips, Speciality Manager for Anaesthetic & Recovery Theatres at Neath Port Talbot Hospital, said: “Rea’s natural enthusiasm is infectious and refreshing. She is so engaging with this patient group and they respond to her communications and warm and caring personality.”
Professor Jayne Cutter, head of nursing at Swansea University, said: “We are very proud that Rea has been honoured in this way and are delighted that she will now be building on her many skills as she studies with us. We have no doubt she will continue to be an asset to the nursing profession.”
Rea added: “Even the smallest of things can make the biggest difference to our patients. Sometimes it takes a little thought to make things better.”