Colleagues across Surrey Heartlands have been recognised for their outstanding contribution to healthcare through a number of shortlisted entries in this year’s HSJ Awards 2021 – in what has been an exceptional and challenging period across the sector.

As a system, we’ve been shortlisted in three separate categories:  the NHS Race Equality Award for the work of our BAME Alliance; the Health and Local Government Partnership Award for our learning disabilities and autism programme; and in the Integrated Care System of the Year category for a joint project across the ICS and Ashford and St Peter’s hospitals to reduce the time taken to diagnose lung cancer (more detail on each below).  We are also delighted that a number of our partners have also been shortlisted individually; the Alliance for Better Care GP Federation (across East Surrey and parts of Sussex) for their Covid-19 vaccination programme; Surrey and Borders Partnership for their community mental health services; Surrey and Sussex Healthcare as NHS Acute Trust of the year; and PA Consulting for the work they did in helping to set up the NHS Seacole Centre last year.

Professor Claire Fuller, Senior Responsible Officer for Surrey Heartlands ICS said: “As a system we are delighted to see the contribution of colleagues right across our partnership recognised in this way.  This kind of recognition not only highlights the collaborative efforts and dedication of all the teams involved, but also showcases the continued hard work of colleagues across the system in transforming local services and supporting people to live healthier lives. I’d like to offer my congratulations to all involved”.

In more detail, as a system we were shortlisted in the following three categories:

NHS Race Equality Award

The Surrey Heartlands ICS BAME (Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic) Alliance has been shortlisted for its work championing equality and diversity. In this its first year, the Alliance has worked closely with staff listening and responding to how colleagues are feeling on race equality in the workplace, taking action to address concerns and making sure this important issue is on the agenda at the highest level with the support of the entire partnership.

In the same category, the wider South East Coast region was also shortlisted for our Turning the Tide Board which focuses on tackling racial inequalities, alongside two entries from Sussex ICS (the Sussex BAME Disparity Response Programme, and BAME Locally Commissioned Service which relates to primary care) demonstrating the work we are doing across the whole region in this critical area.

Health and Local Government Partnership Award

With Surrey County Council we have been jointly shortlisted for our Learning Disability and Autism Programme which aims to increase the number of people with learning disabilities and autism that live independently, with higher quality joined up care and support, access to employment, life skills and friendship groups.

Integrated Care System of the Year

A joint project between Surrey Heartlands ICS and Ashford & St Peter’s hospitals to reduce diagnosis times for lung cancer patients has been recognsied in the Integrated Care System of the Year category. The ‘Direct Access Urgent CT Lung Pathway Project’ helps to reduce the time it takes to diagnose lung cancer by providing GPs with direct access to urgent CT scans for anyone displaying concerning symptoms.

Further success across the Surrey Heartlands partnership includes the GP Federation, Alliance for Better Care, which works across East Surrey and parts of Sussex shortlisted in the Primary Care Networks, GP or Community Provider of the Year category for its inclusive Covid-19 vaccination programme, ensuring all patients, including the most vulnerable, had equal access to vaccinations.

Despite the demanding circumstances of the past 18 months, over 1000 entries were received for this year’s HSJ Awards, with 205 organisations, projects and individuals making it to the final shortlist.

The selected winners will be announced during the awards ceremony at Evolution, London on November 18th 2021.

More information on the HSJ Awards 2021 can be found at www.awards.hsj.co.uk.