IF THE staff at the Great Western Hospital have made a difference to your life, then why not nominate them for the People’s Choice Award.

For the fourth year running, the Trust will be hosting its annual Staff Excellence Awards to recognise and celebrate the outstanding achievements, hard work and dedication shown by their staff every day of the year.

Last year, they introduced a new category – the People’s Choice Award – designed to recognise the real difference staff at the hospital and out in the community make to patients and service users, nominated by members of the public.

Last year, the Cardiac Rehab Team won the award after patient Reverend Trevor Day nominated them.

Trevor, 62, of Sparcells, suffered a serious heart attack on January 9 last year, during morning prayer at Christ Church in Old Town.

He said: “I wasn’t feeling too well – I’d had what I thought was a chest infection for about a month, but it started feeling like I was running up a hill and couldn’t catch my breath.

“My friend took me up to the Clover Centre at the hospital and they rushed me through to A&E and put an oxygen mask on me.

“The next thing I remember was a lady doctor asking me if I knew what had just happened and they told me I had suffered a cardiac arrest.

“She said ‘if you hadn’t been here, you wouldn’t still be here’.”

Within two and a half days, Trevor was on his way home after having an angiogram and a stent fitted.

Following the operation, he met with the Cardiac Rehab team who helped him get his life back to normal, and make any dietary, fitness and lifestyle changes to improve his quality of life.

“I felt quite calm about the whole thing, yes because I believe in God, but also because God gives people gifts and these gifts are what the Cardiac Rehab team have,” said Trevor.

“It was all about team work, and not being left on my own.

“I had never really thought about the process of having a heart attack, so it was a surprise to find out about the Cardiac Rehab team, but a very pleasant surprise.

“Most people write in to the hospital to complain, but I wanted to say thank you. They made me realise that you can carry on, it doesn’t have to be a life-stopper, you carry on with a better understanding of your body. It makes you stop and think, ‘what am I doing, where am I going in life?’.

“So if you want to say thank you, just say it, don’t just think it.”

Stephanie Taylor, Cardiac Rehabilitation Specialist Nurse, said she was delighted that the team won the award last year.

“It was a real honour, we were quite shocked and surprised that people took the effort to nominate us and because it was the People’s Choice Award it meant a lot to us,” she said.

“We strive to provide a good service and we are a very specialised team, and a very small cog in a wheel, so to be picked out and to actually win was just amazing.”

Have you received great treatment from a team or member of staff? Has a member of staff gone the extra mile in delivering your care?

If so then this is your chance to make sure it doesn't go unnoticed.

To make a nomination, download a form by visiting www.gwh.nhs.uk and email it to staffawards@gwh.nhs.uk or pop it in the post to Communications Team, Trust HQ, Great Western Hospital, Marlborough Road, Swindon, SN3 6BB If you have any difficulties downloading the form or any questions about making a nomination email comms@gwh.nhs.uk or contact 01793 604431.

The deadline for nominations is 5pm on March 8.

All shortlisted nominees will be invited to a special Awards Ceremony in June where the winners will be announced. The ceremony will be held at Steam.