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Double celebration for Innovation Agency teams shortlisted in 2021 HSJ Awards

2 projects run by the Innovation Agency are in the running for a top award after emerging as favourites in the HSJ Awards 2021. Work to reduce the incidence of asthma in 1 area of Merseyside and a second to identify irregular heartbeats to prevent strokes have both been shortlisted as part of the awards, which recognise outstanding contribution to healthcare.

Innovation Agency Chief Executive Dr Phil Jennings said:- "Our work to help manage asthma for patients in Knowsley, alongside of:- Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital, Liverpool University Hospitals and Primary Care Knowsley, is making a real difference. Meanwhile our Patient and Public Involvement Team have worked phenomenally hard to spread the word about atrial fibrillation in different communities. By involving patients, the public and other organisations this collaborative work has really helped increase awareness of the condition and encouraged more people to take steps to avoid a stroke."

Atrial Fibrillation Ambassadors in the Community has been nominated in the HSJ’s Provider Collaboration of the Year. Proactive management of asthma in primary care for patients in Knowsley has been nominated in the HSJ’s Primary Care Innovation of the Year. The project was also shortlisted in the HSJ’s Patient Safety Awards, announced earlier this summer.

The judging panel was once again made up of a diverse range of highly influential and respected figures within the healthcare community, including:- Sir Bruce Keogh (Chair, Birmingham Women’s and Children’s FT); Marie Gabriel CBE (Chair, NHS Race and Health Observatory); and former HSJ Trust of the Year winners Ann Marr OBE (Chief Executive, St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals Trust) and Richard Mitchell (Chief Executive, Sherwood Forest Hospitals FT).

Following the intense and in depth judging process, the Innovation Agency projects were shortlisted, ahead of the official awards ceremony to be held on 18 November 2021, at Evolution, London.

HSJ editor Alistair McLellan, commented:- "On behalf of all my colleagues, I’d like to take this opportunity to congratulate the Innovation Agency on being nominated in this year’s HSJ Awards. The applications we receive always present our panel of judges with a very difficult task as the standard is unfailingly high and the breadth of innovation and passion for patient care is always so inspiring. This year, we really have been overwhelmed with the level of entries, particularly when set against the backdrop of the Covid19 Pandemic and the huge challenges faced by our health and social care workforce. We are therefore looking forward to welcoming all our finalists to the live ceremony in November and joining us in celebrating their incredible achievements and commitment to excellence."

The full list of nominees for the HSJ Awards 2021 can be found on:- Awards.HSJ.Co.UK/Shortlist-2021.

Police Commissioner joins calls for greater protection for shop workers

MERSEYSIDE'S new Police Commissioner has joined calls for greater protection for shop workers across England as she met retail staff to listen to their concerns today. New laws came into force in Scotland, on Tuesday, 24 August 2021, which make assaulting or abusing retail staff a standalone offence, but moves to bring the same protection in across the UK have so far failed. Emily Spurrell echoed the calls of retail trade union Usdaw and the British Retail Consortium, (BRC) urging the UK Government to follow the Scottish example and introduce similar protections across the rest of the UK as she met a group of staff working at the Co-op in Myrtle Street in Liverpool City Centre to listen to their experiences. Every day, more than 400 retail workers across the UK face violence, just for doing their jobs. 6 of those incidents will involve a knife, and 2 a gun. A lot of these shops sit in the heart of the community, and these instances impact on the workers and sense of safety within the community. According to retail trade union Usdaw, every minute of the working day during the Pandemic somewhere across the country a shop worker was verbally abused, threatened with violence or physically attacked. As high streets and shops have re-opened following the easing of Covid19 restrictions, retail workers are once again on the frontline making it a good time to raise awareness of the issues of violence against shop workers and the Cooperative Party's:- 'Safer Colleagues, Safer Communities' campaign. The campaign was launched in 2018 to raise awareness of retail crime and encourage the Government to do more to help combat the issue head on.

Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell said:- "Shopkeepers and workers provide a vital service to our communities. That has never been more apparent than this year, when during the Pandemic they helped to keep the country running, providing essential supplies and human interaction for people who may otherwise have been isolated and struggling. Despite that, incidents of abuse and violence have continued to increase. Nobody should go to work fearing violence, threats or abuse. The impact of criminal attacks on these premises can be huge and have significant long term effect on both employees and businesses. The Scottish Government unanimously passed the Protection of Workers Act which has come into effect today, providing greater protection for shop workers and introducing tougher sentences for perpetrators. Ministers in Westminster need to follow their example and I support the calls from Usdaw and many others to provide the same protection for retail staff across England by amending the Policing Bill when it goes back to the House of Lords in September. It was deeply disappointing that ministers failed to approve a clause to include it back in July. I want business owners and shop workers to know that I am on their side and their voices are being heard. I was delighted to meet staff from the Co-op today to listen to their concerns. Tackling retail crime and protecting shop workers will be among the priorities in my new Police and Crime Plan, so today’s conversation will be vital in helping to inform my work going forward."


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