Congratulations on your NHS Wales Award 2020! By Dominique Bird, Head of Capacity & Capability

I’m sure I’m not the only one thinking that everyone in health and social care deserves an NHS Wales Award this year. 2020 was the first year in twelve years that we’ve had to cancel the awards ceremony – and what a year it was.

So many of you have been working tirelessly across the system, be it on COVID-19 directly or in the wider service. We’ve all had to think on our feet, adapt and use our natural ingrained improvement skills to make way for the challenges that dealing with a pandemic has thrown at us. There’s been so many excellent examples of rapid improvement. One positive we must take from this year is what we’ve learnt and take time to reflect and process what has happened (our ‘Learning from COVID toolkit’ can help you and your team capture this).

In 2021 we’re going to be working with you all to be able to share your experiences and what you’ve learnt – the good and the bad. By sharing improvement stories we can all provide better care.

We can’t know what the next year will bring but it’s safe to say that the majority of NHS staff time is going to be taken up with responding to COVID-19. Therefore, we’ve taken the decision to change the awards next year into a special celebration of improvement and good practice that’s been happening during the pandemic. This means we can all learn from the innovation taking place and take stock of what has happened. We’ll let you know more soon.

So I want to say on behalf of all of us – thank you. We’re dedicating this year’s ‘Outstanding Contribution to Transforming Health and Care’ Award to each and every one of you. Congratulations on all of your hard work and thank you for your dedication to health and care in Wales.

To read more about the awards and winning projects from previous years, visit our new webpage.