The finalists for the Skills for Health – Our Health Heroes Awards 2022 have been revealed, with voting now open until 4 February.
From porters and cleaners to receptionists, gardeners and security guards, these often unsung heroes make up roughly 40% of the NHS’s million-strong workforce.
The awards celebrate the achievements of those wider healthcare workers that support our NHS doctors and nurses on the frontline and provide an opportunity to show our appreciation for the vital role that they play in keeping our health service functioning.
John Rogers, the chief executive of Skills for Health, which delivers the awards, said: “Without the wider healthcare workforce that Our Health Heroes Awards aims to recognise and celebrate, our NHS would grind to a halt.
“Now more than ever, it is important to raise awareness of the valuable contribution that these inspirational teams and individuals make to the health of the nation and to thank them publicly for the sacrifices they make.”
Now in its sixth year, the awards received hundreds of nominations from fellow healthcare workers and across the community. These were whittled down to 12 finalists across four categories, and the gold, silver or bronze prize winners will be announced at an awards ceremony due to take place at the Science Museum in London on 24 March.
In addition to awards for individuals, a panel of judges will decide the group category winners, which include prizes for NHS improvement through digital innovation, Dedication to a lifelong learning culture and Most inspired health and care support by a UK charity.
UNISON is sponsoring two of the individual awards – Breakthrough apprentice of the year and Exceptional NHS operational support worker of the year.
UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “UNISON is delighted to be sponsoring the awards once again, to help recognise and give thanks for the valuable work of the whole NHS team.
“The dedication, expertise and hard work of all NHS staff must be recognised, particularly at a time of such immense pressure on the health service.
“The Our Health Heroes Awards shine a light on the vital work of the entire healthcare team – cleaners, porters, security staff, receptionists, medical secretaries and many more – without whom the NHS simply couldn’t function.”