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If you haven’t yet got your application in for our Best Practice Awards, there’s no time to lose, as entries close on 29 September. We’re looking to reward excellence in services and shine a light on the outstanding efforts of rheumatology teams. We spoke to some of our past winners about what impact the awards have had and why it’s important to apply.

Raising the profile of rheumatology services

2020 award winner: Dr Stuart Kyle, consultant rheumatologist, Northern Devon Healthcare Trust

"The award undoubtedly helped our project gain traction and recognition much quicker than without it. It’s not only helped raise the profile of the project within the trust but has improved the visibility of rheumatology as a whole. The awards are nationally recognised among peers in our community, and it’s been rewarding experience personally and for the team.

"You don’t need a completely finished product to apply for a Best Practice Award. If you have something that's important to the rheumatology community, submit it. Applying for the award is a simple process and a positive experience.

"Now's the time that we really need good news stories around rheumatology. COVID-19 showed us we need to adapt quickly; learning from each other is essential. The process, whether you win or not, only helps improve services for your patients.” 

Acknowledgment of innovation

2020 award winner: Terrie Stocker, osteoporosis clinical nurse specialist, University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust

"When a project takes time and effort to get up and running, an award of this merit makes you feel very proud for the whole team. It’s recognition from peers both internally and externally that what you’re doing is innovative and worthwhile. Alongside that, the award lets other teams know about your project which could be useful to their work.

"The award was for our course for osteoporosis patients, which has reduced the number of hip and spine fractures. We’ve had to pause it during the pandemic but getting the award helped validate the project and we're back up and running again now, supporting even more patients."

Driving forward best practice

2020 award winner: Dr Shane Clarke, University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust

"The Best Practice Awards are a great initiative. Our win was unexpected, but it was wonderful to have that recognition from our peers and be able to showcase the hard work of the team behind the project. Entering the awards isn’t onerous and it will help you take stock of your achievements and work out where you can take your project next.

"Despite our busy lives, it’s so important to always keep learning from each other and this is a great opportunity to do that. By sharing your experience, you can inspire others."

There’s still time to enter; we’d love to hear from your team about how you’re improving the lives of rheumatology patients.

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