4th November 2020

National award shortlisting for team behind factory health project

The NHS team behind an initiative to offer screening for latent tuberculosis, general health checks, information and advice to factory workers in south Lincolnshire have been shortlisted for a national award.

Staff from Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS) impressed judges in the Team of the Year category of the Nursing Times Awards 2020 with their efforts to improve access to healthcare services.

The work has been led by members of the countywide Community Tuberculosis (TB) Service and the trust’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team.

Sue Silvester, TB lead nurse at LCHS, explained: “Through this project, we wanted to improve people’s understanding of how to access local health services, break down language barriers and increase screening for TB and latent TB (LTBI).

“Lincolnshire has a low incidence of TB but we were experiencing a low uptake for conventional home visiting for TB and LTBI screening. This project allows us to offer convenient screening to all factory staff, contributing to a wider programme of reducing the number of TB cases across the county.

“By offering services in a different way, we have been able to help reduce health inequalities, facilitate a dedicated time for workers to access information, act as a first point of contact for healthcare advice, reduce the incidence of TB locally, facilitate onward referral where necessary for a range of health issues and build great working relationships with local employers.”

Sue, who also holds the Queen’s Nurse title, added: “We are very proud to be recognised by the Nursing Times.”

Among the factories to support health awareness days was Albert Bartlett at Kirton Holme, near Boston.

Lee Winter, Albert Bartlett’s HR and HSE manager, said: “Sue and her team really made a difference to the health of our workers during their site visits. We welcome them back at any time and cannot speak highly enough of both their professional and personnel skills – always ready to advise and put everyone at ease. They are a credit to the trust with the way they run their workshops.”

The winners of the Nursing Times Awards will be announced during a virtual ceremony on 18 November, 2020.

Rachel Higgins, equality, diversity and inclusion lead at LCHS, said: “Our services are constantly looking at new ways to engage with members of our local communities. With the support of a number of local employers, this project is making a real difference to people who otherwise it would have been difficult for us to reach out to.”

Any factories interested in hosting a health promotion and health screening visit from the team, can contact the Community TB Service team on 01522 307239.

ENDS

Photo caption: Pictured, from left, are: Sue Silvester (LCHS TB lead nurse), Johanna Nind (LCHS health communities officer), Laila Ray (LCHS TB nurse), Rachel Rodgers (TB nurse), Anna Kusztyb (LCHS healthy communities officer) and Lee Winter (Albert Bartlett’s HR and HSE manager)

Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust provides local community based health care services across the county to help people live independently at home including urgent care, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, speech and language services, community nursing, school age immunisations and children’s therapy services. The Trust also provides services at four community hospitals.

Tuberculosis (TB) is an illness caused by bacteria. It commonly affects the lungs but you can get TB in almost any part of your body. TB in the lungs or throat is the only type of TB that can be infectious.

Latent TB (LTBI) means you will not have symptoms and you cannot pass TB on to others. This is because the TB bacteria is ‘asleep’ in the body, kept under control by the immune system. However, the bacteria might ‘wake up’ at any time, making you ill.

TB and LTBI can both be treated with antibiotics. TB nurses will support individuals through this treatment.

For further information, please contact the Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust Communications Team. Call 01522 309751 or email lhnt.lchsecomms@nhs.net

To view this information on our website, please click here.

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