Corporate Information

Countess Gem of the month...Stroke Unit

Stroke Unit 1

The Stroke Unit is the latest Countess Gem award winner after staff arranged a special chapel ceremony for a patient who was unable to attend his daughter’s wedding.

Originally it had been hoped that the patient would be discharged in time to be there for the big day, but when that couldn’t happen staff on the unit set about doing all they could for the family.

They arranged for the bride-to-be to attend a special blessing at the hospital’s Spiritual Care Centre with the patient, before the entire family headed abroad for the wedding. On the big day itself, staff also helped to make it possible for the patient to be part of the wedding via FaceTime from an iPad at his hospital bedside.

Ward Manager Alison Broster said: “Our staff wanted to do something special for this family and it was a real team effort to pull it all together, going the extra mile to make his daughter getting married as great as it could be for the patient, his daughter and the rest of the family who would miss him on the day. They were so pleased with everything we did.” 

The unit’s desire to pull out all the stops for the family was recognised in three different nominations. You can see a selection of the comments below:

Staff nurse Jenna Maddox said: “Staff on the day went above and beyond for the patient and family to try and make this a special day for both. The family were overwhelmed with the support that staff offered. After the blessing the family had a small gathering in Ward 33`s day room. Staff (whilst caring for other patients) ensured they had everything they needed. The family have expressed dearest thanks for staff for assisting with such a special day. The staff go above and beyond on many occasions for both patients and relatives and deserve some recognition for their continued hard work.”

 Staff nurse Abigail Davis said: “Along with the patients family the ward staff organised a blessing for the daughter in the hospital chapel, and assisted the patient to get ready for the day. They also assisted with setting up the day room for a follow on reception for the patient his daughter and family. I think this is an example of staff going above and beyond to improve patient care and wellbeing.”

Dr Josh Deb-Barman said: “The stroke unit provide highly-individualised, personal care to the usually long-stay patients and the nursing team (under the dynamic leadership of Ward Manager Ali Broster) in particular go above and beyond the call of duty to improve the lives of patients after an often devastating diagnosis … Ward 33 therefore deserves to be nominated for all their amazing work and care that they provide, and I believe should win a Countess Gem award.”

Alison added: “I would like to personally thank everyone who works on ward 33, across the many different teams, for the excellent care that we give. It’s tough but we do try our very, very best to go over and above and getting recognition like this keeps everybody going. We are good at what we do and that needs to be celebrated.”

Deputy Director of People and Organisational Development Dee Appleton-Cairns said: “Our stroke unit is an outstanding part of Team Countess because of their compassion and dedication to providing the highest quality personalised care. I’m not surprised at all to see what they did for this family and, having won a gong at the North West Coast Research and Innovation Awards 2018, it shows that not only is our stroke unit at the forefront of clinical practice but in terms of kindness and compassion as well.”


About Countess Gems

‘Countess Gems’ are a monthly recognition awards scheme at the Countess of Chester Hospital, with members of staff nominating colleagues who they think deserve special praise. Every person/team nominated officially becomes a ‘Countess Gem’ with a certificate. Once a month the leadership group reviews all the nominations and selects an overall winner. This team/individual will then receive £125 to spend with in-house Catering Services to celebrate. The Countess Gems awards are funded through donations from patients and families in thanks for the care they have received (charitable funds).