NHS ‘Community Hero’ Scoops National Porter Award

A new national award-scheme recognising the work and dedication of NHS hospital porters has today announced its first winner and a special posthumous award.

The MyPorter Awards recognise the work and dedication of NHS portering teams, who, like many NHS staff, have taken on extra responsibilities, worked additional shifts and gone the 'extra-mile' to help hospitals cope with the pressures of the Covid pandemic.

The awards attracted entries from across the UK, with many hospitals nominating more than one individual and, in some instances, entire teams.

The winner of the first MyPorter Awards for 2020 is Claire Blackhall, a Chargehand Porter at Wansbeck General Hospital, Northumbria. Despite suffering the personal loss of family members, single Mum, Claire, continued to work full-time, not taking a single day off. She performed her role with extraordinary humanity, listening to patients and helping wherever she could, despite her personal agonies. On top of all her hard work, Claire is also training to become a volunteer coastguard – something she has chosen to do as a means of giving back to her local community. Tracey Smith, Hotel Service Officer Facilities for Northumbria Healthcare NHS Trust, commented, “This is a fantastic achievement; I am immensely proud of Claire's approach to work and the support she gives not only to our patients but to the wider team and staff at Wansbeck General Hospital."

Claire wins the MyPorter Award 2020 trophy, and a donation of £250 will be made to a charity of her choice. A further £250 charity donation goes to the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Trust’s charity partner, ‘Bright Northumbria’ https://www.justgiving.com/NHCCF)

A further special posthumous award will honour the late Dennis Southern, also a porter with the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust from 2007 to 2021.

Sadly, Dennis passed away on 1st February 2021, leaving a legacy of dedication, hard work, respect and compassion. For these reasons, the judges have created the Dennis Southern Award – for endeavour, which will be presented to the Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital where Dennis worked.

The Dennis Southern Award will be awarded annually to an outstanding individual in addition to the awarding of the annual MyPorter Award.

Claire and Dennis’s stories personify putting the needs of others before their personal difficulties. The following notable entries, each deserving special mention, show just how difficult the judges found the job of choosing only one worthy winner.

Richard Barrow and Mark Sadler from George Eliot NHS Trust were typical nominations. Whilst transferring a patient receiving end-of-life care, they overheard the patient asking his wife if he could have a taste of his favourite ice-cream one last time. Richard and Mark promptly went to the local shop, bought the ice-cream with their own money and took it to the patient. This small act of kindness created a precious moment of joy for the patient and earned Richard and Mark the family's gratitude.

Lauren Ross represents the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust. Lauren deserved special mention for her vigilance when she noticed that a patient she had previously delivered for an X-ray had deteriorated, becoming unresponsive. Lauren raised the alarm; a crash call was made, and the patient transferred to the resuscitation unit. Had Lauren not been so attentive or quick-thinking, a very different outcome may have resulted. Paul Hynes from the Liverpool Heart & Chest Hospital has been an unsung hero to his colleagues and patients. Despite having been very poorly with Covid himself, Paul returned to work as quickly as he was able to help his colleagues. He has covered additional shifts, plugging gaps in the team numbers in whatever ways he could. He's also been a wellbeing champion, supporting staff who have struggled with the emotional strain of dealing with Covid patients, day-in, day-out. He has been recognised for professionally and compassionately supporting his colleagues.

Commenting on the reasons for introducing the awards, Richard Iveson of GlobalView, creators of MyPorter, explained, "Porters are often the unsung heroes of the NHS, and they put in a lot of gruelling hours of hard, physical and emotional work. If you took the porters out of a hospital, nothing would work; it would grind to a halt. They’re a vital cog in the machine for every hospital, none more so than during the Covid-19 pandemic. We wanted to create an opportunity for NHS Trusts to honour their porter heroes publicly." Runners-up, included: Paul Hynes, nominated by Sharon Hindley (Liverpool Heart & Chest hospital), Richard Barrow & Mark Sadler, nominated by Paul Sylvester (George Eliot Hospital) & Lauren Ross, nominated by Nikki O'Brien (Leeds General Infirmary). Notable mentions go to: David Beattie, nominated by Phil Hall (Hexham General Hospital), Joe Cooper, nominated by Martyn Abbott (Maidstone Hospital) & Michael Rainbird, nominated by Mark Lepine-Williams (Frimley Park Hospital).

We're delighted to tell you all about how we have been working closely with Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, which has played a key role in the development of our MyPorter porter task management solution system - it has seen a reduction in the burden on their helpdesk as well as productivity and the effective prioritisation of patients requiring urgent and rapid care, among other great benefits. You can now read more about this via our new case study, which can be downloaded here, by clicking the link below the image:

Hull Case Study - 2 pager - digital copy
Download • 2.24MB

GlobalView Systems has just released a new update to its unique MyPorter software management system, which gives additional insight and reporting capability for portering managers to increase efficiency and improve patient flow using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).

The KPI Settings Report Tool enables managers to establish and interrogate specific KPIs such as porter uptime and time taken to complete both booked and urgent tasks, as well as producing insightful reports within seconds. Measuring success is a vital component of delivering effective services, and the Tool gives Trusts a flexible and meaningful way to monitor progress. Traditionally, portering KPIs are based on activity time, e.g. patient moves being undertaken within 20 minutes. The KPI Tool allows other factors such as priority, location and response times to be quantified, enabling more detailed reporting and the ability to target adjustments to areas which most require performance improvement.

The Tool enables hospitals to monitor the portering KPIs most relevant to them, and produce tailored reports according to precise areas such as:

  • Time between request and porter completing the task for urgent cases such as sepsis or dementia

  • Time taken to allocate and accept tasks

  • Average time taken from accept to completion on all tasks

  • Response times to urgent requests

  • Workforce utilisation rate e.g. 80% porter uptime

The response to booked appointments can also be measured, helping to reduce missed appointments, ensure maximum utilisation of vital equipment and make best use of clinical staff time, as well as giving them the confidence to work to capacity.

The KPI Settings Report Tool provides a real time colour-coded dashboard of performance against targets, making it easy to identify and address any areas of concern as they occur. The Tool also enables detailed reports to be easily and quickly produced in a few simple steps, tailored according to the needs of the individual Trust. This may be at a task, departmental or Trust level, inline with Care Quality Commission reporting or in response to national targets such as Emergency Department four hour wait times.

The Tool gives Trusts the ability to establish Service Level Agreements (SLAs) which measure performance and demonstrate meaningful improvements and benefits over time, such as fewer pauses, fewer cancelled tasks, fewer tasks commenced after start time and improved patient flow. Various factors can be interrelated, e.g. a KPI can be created to measure the time taken from requesting a Covid patient being moved from ICU to completion.

The new Tool can be used in conjunction with MyPorter’s existing reporting function, which enables managers to view trends over time to help predict peaks in demand and allocate resource accordingly, helping to manage capacity versus demand over the longer term.

MyPorter was developed following extensive consultation with portering teams in over 100 NHS Trusts, and has been designed to meet the particular needs of the porters and managers. The KPI Reporting functionality was introduced in response to a request from Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (HUTH), and GlobalView worked closely with the facilities management team to create a solution that presented the data they needed in an insightful format. It has now been rolled out to all existing MyPorter customers throughout the UK.

The MyPorter task management system, gives real time visibility on porter location and activity, helping to streamline processes and improve patient flow with timely movements. The system is proactive, with notifications received prior to task start times. The system also records paused events, the reason, their duration and location, making it easy to identify and address delays and pinch points. A full audit trail can be accessed if needed, and any service queries easily resolved.

MyPorter has also improved the patient experience, ensuring they are in the right place, at the right time, and fewer appointments are missed or delayed. Tasks are distributed via text message to radio handsets or android devices, so this means no patient information can be overheard, enhancing patient dignity and reducing noise in the hospital environment.

Matt Wright, CEO at GlobalView Systems said: “We work in partnership with all of our customers to ensure their MyPorter systems are configured to their needs, and this new functionality has been developed in direct response to customer requirements to give them even more information to help them plan future service delivery. We have a continuous improvement approach, which means MyPorter will evolve over time, with enhancements and additional features to provide increased insight. The NHS has never been under greater pressure, and it’s vital that they have the tools available to help them ensure smooth patient flow and optimal use of valuable resources.”