16th October 2018

Trust team win prestigious award

Speech and Language Therapists, Anita Smith and Karen McInally along with ENT Consultant, Paul Kirkland, have won the prestigious Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists (RCSLT) Sternberg Award for Clinical Innovation.

The team won the award for their work on introducing a ‘One Stop Swallow Disorder Clinic’, which has reduced treatment time down from 24 week to 5 weeks, and improved patient safety and satisfaction.

Speech and Language Therapists Anita Smith and Karen McInally receive Sternberg Award for Clinical Innovation

Speech and Language Therapists Anita Smith and Karen McInally receive Sternberg Award for Clinical Innovation

RCSLT Chief Executive, Kamini Gadhok MBE said: “The RCSLT Trustees and I are delighted to be able to recognise the ground-breaking work of Anita Smith, Karen McInally and Paul Kirkland with a Sternberg Innovation Award. Their ‘one stop’ Swallow Disorders Clinic improves both patient safety and waiting times, which can only be seen as good things. Many congratulations again to them and the team at Conquest Hospital, on winning this prestigious award.”

Anita Smith, Consultant Speech and Language Therapist said: “We are delighted our one stop swallow disorder clinic has been recognised, with a prestigious award from the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists. It has led to improvements in patient care, safety and the patient experience. The development of this clinic shows how different professional groups working together can really make a difference. The clinic has significantly reduced waiting times, and the number of appointments that patients have traditionally attended to get answers to their difficulties. Our patients tell us they have benefited from the clinic and it gives us great satisfaction to provide an excellent service, a win win all round.”

The Swallow Clinic offers a quality, holistic and patient-centred approach to swallowing disorders. It provides a ‘one stop’ clinic which gives patients a timely, detailed assessment, good communication with immediate advice and therapy, and improved patient safety, potentially reducing unnecessary exposure to radiation. Using a more holistic approach has dramatically reduced waiting times – the patient pathway has been reduced from 24 to just 5 weeks.

The team were presented with the award at a RCSLT Honours Ceremony in Cardiff.