Our Health Heroes Awards
The UK awards for the health and care workforce
Our Health Heroes Awards recognises and honours the hard work carried out daily by thousands of healthcare support staff in roles vital to the provision of patient care.
In this section:
About the Awards
The national awards for the healthcare workforce, Our Health Heroes recognises and honours the hard work carried out daily by thousands of staff across the UK.
Nearly half of the healthcare workforce is made up of support staff who play a vital role in the delivery of patient care, and improving the lives of the communities they serve. The awards are a perfect opportunity to celebrate their contributions.
Nominations for the 2024 Awards opened on 13 November, and will close midday 7 December.
Take a look at our 11 award categories:
Apprentice of the Year
Apprentices make a significant contribution to the healthcare sector, and are a vital route of education and onboarding staff into the workforce. We want to shine a light on the bright stars of the future – those who go above and beyond in their role, and act as advocates for apprenticeships to those considering their future careers, whether in clinical or operational roles.
Best Healthcare Initiative in a Justice Setting
Everyone has a right to healthcare, and this award recognises the excellent work being done in often challenging settings, meeting complex organisational and patient needs. Whether in prisons and probation, policing, or other justice settings, we want to hear about the important role that healthcare professionals in justice are playing for patients and service users.
Best Healthcare Support by a UK Charity
Charities are an integral part of the healthcare system, providing treatment or care, supporting patients and their families, and advocating for public health and needs – whether in mental health, grief support, learning disability, or many more areas. It would be hard to honour them all, but we want to hear from charities of any size who have made a significant difference to the health and wellbeing of the public.
Best Healthcare Workforce Collaboration
The healthcare sector works hand-in-hand with other organisations every day. We want to celebrate the amazing – and often life-saving – people who make collaboration between organisations work on the ground. Whether they are ambulance services, fire and rescue services, police, coastguard, social care, community practices, or many others – we are excited to hear about those who have gone above and beyond to improve patient outcomes by working and learning in cross-agency teams.
Clinical Support Worker of the Year
Clinical support roles provide vital services for patients and service users – the healthcare system simply couldn’t function without them. They make all the difference in providing exceptional care, and are often on the frontline helping the most vulnerable in society. They are inspirational to their colleagues but sadly sometimes their contributions go unnoticed – so this award is a chance to give back and recognise them!
Dedication to a Lifelong Learning Culture
Continuous learning is a core principle of the healthcare sector – as new regulations, guidelines, best practice and ways of working emerge, staff have to constantly embrace learning and developing new skills. Organisations also have to improve the accessibility and credibility of training and ensure opportunity for all staff. We want to hear from teams and employers who are delivering world-class learning and development programmes that promote this lifelong learning.
Proudly sponsored by SFJ Awards
Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Champion
With clear aspirations for inclusive workplaces in healthcare in place, we want to recognise the efforts of those who are supporting equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives, and are promoting positive outcomes for staff from diverse groups. We’re excited to hear about individuals or teams who have made a clear, significant, and sustainable improvement in tackling inclusion and diversity challenges.
Proudly supported by NHS Race & Health Observatory
Healthcare Volunteer of the Year
New for 2024 we want to celebrate the contribution made by the thousands of individuals who give their time freely to support our healthcare system. Volunteers are crucial to the NHS’s vision for the future of health and social care, as partners with skilled staff, not as substitutes for them.
From those who volunteer in hospital libraries and radio stations, to patient befrienders and transport drivers, there are more than 300 voluntary roles within the NHS. We want to hear about these good Samaritans, who go above and beyond in their free time, to brighten the lives of not only patients and services users, but also staff.
NHS Improvement through Digital Innovation
The power of technology is evidenced everywhere across the healthcare system. We want to celebrate those teams who have innovated and incorporated digital technologies into their ways of working – designing, implementing or championing improvements that have made a clear impact to staff. These will ultimately have had positive repercussions for colleagues and the wider workforce and their ability and time to provide care.
Operational Support Worker of the Year
The infrastructure around healthcare is vast and complex, but absolutely critical in ensuring patients can access the services they need. Every person and every role in healthcare settings plays a part in this, and we want to celebrate those in operational roles who keep systems and processes running – whether they are manning a reception, taking care of the buildings and facilities, or making sure staff have access to the systems and tools they need.
Outstanding Lifetime Contribution to Healthcare
Every staff member in the healthcare sector is a hero for their contributions to the health and wellbeing of the public. Some people go truly above and beyond, without seeking reward or recognition – for example, by dedicating decades of their life to one area of practice, or to keeping one organisation or ward running, by investing significant personal time to improving and enhancing patient care, or going out of their way to make improvements and help people.
We want to hear about the special people tirelessly working away with great dedication – providing a role model to those around them, and making outstanding contributions that make a difference to the immediate care of individuals and the wider healthcare sector.
Proudly sponsored by NHS Employers
Our Health Heroes Awards 2024 supporters
Our sponsors and supporters help us celebrate the Health Heroes, and we couldn’t run these awards without their invaluable support.