A practice manager in Gloucester has won the coveted 'Practice Manager of the Year' title at the inaugural General Practice Awards 2012 for encouraging patient engagement and leading the charge to bring an in-house pharmacy to the practice.
More than 650 healthcare professionals came together to celebrate the work of general practice teams up and down the UK at a glittering awards ceremony at the Hilton hotel in Park Lane, London yesterday (1 November 2012).
Ian Robertson from Glevum Way Surgery said he was "shocked" to win the Williams' Medical sponsored award.
"I was so shocked when my name was called out and I don't think it has even sunk in yet that I've won," he said.
"It is a fantastic achievement and although the title of the award is practice manager of the year, it was a team effort and it was great that my whole admin team could share the night with me."
Robertson has led on many projects over the last year, including: an in-practice pharmacy, the formation of a Patient Participation Group, the recruitment of Nurse Practitioners, the award of a contract to provide Initial Health Assessments for Gloucestershire children in care, the commencement of INR Level 4 testing, the refurbishment of the waiting room area, development and launch of a new website and patient information screen, installation of a new phone system, and utilisation of spare capacity to outside agencies, and a complete review of all practice expenditure.
The General Practice Awards 2012 was hosted by GP and comedian Dr Phil Hammond who poked fun at senior politicians and NHS training styles.
On a more serious note, Dr Hammond was keen to encourage GP teams to learn from the events of Mid-Staffordshire, Winterbourne View and the Jimmy Saville case, and implored them to have the courage to whistleblow on poor patient care or patient safety issues.
"The first person you have to consider whistleblowing on is yourself," he said.
The keynote speech was delivered by Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham, who thanked GP teams for "turning around" the NHS during his time as Secretary of State and asked for help in coming up with the "big alternative" to the current reform plans.