Innovation and patient advocacy: awards showcase best of nursing

We reveal the finalists for the 2023 RCN Nursing Awards, whose work represents the quality, commitment and sheer inventiveness of nurses in the UK

The winners at the RCN Nursing Awards 2022, including RCN Nurse of the Year Antonia Bunce, centre front
Winners at the RCN Nursing Awards 2022 Picture: Barney Newman

The nursing team who eliminated hepatitis C in their area, the nurse who helped a teenager with autism and a history of complex trauma to thrive – these are just two examples of the extraordinary entrants shortlisted for this year's RCN Nursing Awards.

Life-changing innovations and profession-boosting initiatives represent nursing’s diversity

Alongside these finalists are nurses who have developed life-changing innovations, such as the app that allows infants with severe heart defects to be carefully monitored at home while they await surgery.

Then there are initiatives, such as one by the British Indian Nurses Association, which offers tailored pastoral support, induction and CPD programmes that have helped hundreds of its members to progress at work and secure promotions.

The shortlist for the 15 award categories, including greener practice, digital innovation and team of the year, spans the breadth and diversity of the nursing profession.

As a judge for the awards, I know how difficult it was to whittle down around 900 entries to just over 70 to be taken forward for further scrutiny this year.

There are so many amazing projects being run in challenging environments, locally and nationally, and they showcase what is fantastic about nursing – person-centred care, innovation and advocacy.

Celebrating everyday achievements alongside the extraordinary

There is much to be angry about in nursing right now – staffing and pay levels being the obvious – yet it is also vital we celebrate and trumpet the extraordinary work that is highlighted in these awards, but not exclusive to them; this is work that goes on every day in the nursing profession.

We look forward to announcing the winners in November at the awards ceremony, which will be held in Liverpool at our first-ever Nursing Live event, dedicated to supporting nurses professionally and personally. I hope to see you at Nursing Live.

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