Aylesbury nurse Liz Monaghan was honoured as 'Best Nurse' at The Sun’s 'Who Cares Wins Awards' this week and was handed the gong by radio presenter, Chris Evans.
The awards, held on Tuesday evening and hosted by TV presenter Lorraine Kelly, are now in their third year. They were set up to allow readers to pay tribute to the selfless medics, researchers and volunteers who have touched – or in many cases – saved their lives.
Liz is Matron for palliative and end of life care at the Florence Nightingale Hospice, based at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury. She has worked in palliative care for three decades.
Described as “doing that extra bit so selflessly”, Liz was awarded the title for setting up the Purple Rose initiative to improve care for patients and their loved ones in the final days of their lives.
“I lead an amazing team.
“It's [the Purple Rose] a symbol to let others know that the people around the patient are with someone at the end of their life, sharing important moments and to be mindful of that.”
Liz was nominated by Elaine Trump, 70, a member of Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust’s Patient Experience Group.
Elaine said: “It makes a difference when you get a person like Liz. She does that extra bit so selflessly.”
Introduced in January, the Purple Rose initiative brings together practical information, and includes a purple rose to place on the door or curtain to allow further privacy.
Liz, 53, also introduced purple drawstring bags for deceased patients’ personal belongings – initially using her own money to fund these – instead of the standard envelope.
The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, praised the work of the NHS at the ceremony last night. He said:
“The NHS is revered around the world, and in no small part due to the heroes working in it every day.
“I’d like to thank The Sun for recognising all our winners, and for honouring the memory of Christina Newbury, who launched these awards.”