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Innovation award for Royal Derby Hospital team who pioneered new procedure

Published 16/02/2016

A Royal Derby Hospital team which pioneered a new treatment to help patients undergoing ankle surgery has been handed a regional award to recognise their innovation.

Consultant anaesthetist Dr Robbie Erskine and a team based at the hospital received the award from the East Midlands Academic Health Science Network, after their procedure impressed a panel of judges looking for the best advances in medical technology.

The treatment has reduced pain and discomfort for patients following major foot and ankle surgery, and also reduced the amount of time they have to spend in hospital. It has been so successful that it has now been adopted as standard practice in Derby. 

Dr Erskine said: “We’re all so pleased to have won this award for something which has made a real difference to our patients. Traditionally, patients would have this big operation and often be in hospital for four of five days. They would be in a lot of pain, on a lot of morphine and feeling very sick and unwell. This idea was very much centred on improving the experience for patients.”

The team behind the award-winning procedure is led by staff nurse Sue Weston, from the Acute Pain Team. It includes anaesthetists, ward staff, pharmacy staff and members of the orthopaedic team, led by consultant surgeon Steve Milner. 

The procedure uses disposable infusion pumps, which are inserted during surgery to provide nerve block treatment for up to 50 hours.

Seven healthcare organisations received awards at the ceremony in Leicester, from a shortlist of 18 finalists.

EMAHSN Managing Director Professor Rachel Munton said: “The judging was difficult as so many nominations merited awards. Our 18 finalists really show the outstanding solutions and innovations that exist in our region.

“The NHS thrives on innovation and the East Midlands has a huge range of talent. We hope that through recognition and reward we can really put the East Midlands on the innovation map.”

Last Modified 16/02/2016