On 13 October, Thrombosis UK held the 2016 Patient Awards at the Governor's Hall, St Thomas' Hospital.
A celebration of dedication, challenge and success in recognition of the many individuals, families and communities who work tirelessly to ease awareness and support for Thrombosis UK.
Andrew Gwynne MP, Chair of the All Party Group on Thrombosis, who suffered a blood clot several years ago, spoke about the progress made to date but stressed that there still remains a lack of awareness and urgent need to educate both general public and healthcare professionals to improve prevention, early detection and diagnosis and the effective management of this potentially life threatening condition.
Lynn Faulds Wood, who has also suffered a DVT, urged everyone to be part of the awareness campaign, to help people 'think thrombosis', know the signs and seek medical help as soon as possible.
Janet Brown accepting the award on behalf of Sarah Edwards
When Sarah Edwards' beautiful daughter, Abi French, passed away from a pulmonary embolism in February 2015 aged just 22 following a four year battle with VTE, she decided to try and raise as much awareness as possible so that other families did not have to suffer the heart break of losing a beloved daughter so young. The reason for Abi’s repeated clotting episodes was never discovered.
Since then, the Lawrence family and friends have worked tirelessly raising money undertaking many and varied events from table top sales, a Fun Day at RAF Markham and awareness events in local schools. Abi's Grandma, Jan, even rode the Velocity Zip Wire in Snowdonia at 100mph last month!
The Lawrence family and Abi's friends have already raised several thousand pounds in Abi's memory and the support continue to come flooding in.
Rachel Lawrence accepting award
On the 8th October 2013 Rachel's Dad, Richard Lawrence, sadly died suddenly and unexpectedly from a pulmonary embolism. In 2014 Rachel started her fundraising endeavours undertaking a Night Ride and then went on to hold the first 'Richards' Racketlon' in 2015 followed by a very recent 'Richard's Racketlon part two' just a short time ago.
The Lawrence family have donated several thousand pounds to Thrombosis UK to date and continue to support our work.
Mickey Pearce, Isobel’s partner and father to her two children underwent a routine knee operation on 18th December 2013. He collapsed on 14th January 2014 and died of a pulmonary embolism and hypoxic brain injury on January 19th 2014. His daughter Ester reached her first birthday just five days later and their son, Noah, was only five at the time. Mick was a fit, healthy 43 year old man who loved life and was a devoted partner and father.
Isobel held a charity event in his memory in 2015 which raised over £8,000 and his fundraising memorial page still continues to receive donations with the current total standing at £8428.71
In the summer of 2010 Mark Butterfield broke his foot after dropping a car jack on it. He had the foot immbolised and did have some symptoms of DVT soon after, but they had subsided by the time he sought a medical opinion. In December of the same year Mark slipped on some ice and fell hard on his chest. He complained of acute shortness of breath and was admitted to hospital several hours later where he was misdiagnosed with pneumonia, despite the possibility of a PE being mentioned at the time of his admission. Sadly Mark passed away a few days later on a hospital ward.
Helen was determined not to let this pass and set about initiating an investigation into why her previously fit and healthy 47 year old husband had died. After much fighting, the hospital admitted that they had made many errors in his care and safeguards were put in place to ensure that this would not happen again to another family.
In 2012 Helen held a Charity Event at her Cromwell Lake Carp Fishery raising £4320.00p for Thrombosis UK and their son, Nathan, raised a further £387.60p the following year by undertaking a Lent Challenge.
Dawne Archer accepting award
In 2012 Dawne Archer aka ‘Trekker Girl’ contacted Thrombosis UK to discuss her Sahara Trek fundraiser which saw her walk 100km in 5 days in the Sahara Desert. This event started her long-standing support of our work and she has gone on to undertake events as diverse as boot sales and a 48 km overnight walk into the mountains of Mallorca, to promoting activity on her local Spanish radio station who play The Hustle every 90 minutes to encourage VTE awareness amongst listeners.
Dawne has a family history of VTE, having sadly lost her Dad to a PE, following which she found out she had an inherited thrombophilia. Aged 26 Dawne herself had a DVT and PE, which she thankfully survived.
To date Dawne has raised in excess of £6500 inc. gift aid and continues to work tirelessly to raise money and awareness both here in the UK and in Spain.
I am indeed honoured to be the recipient of a Thrombosis UK award.
Unfortunately, I will be out of the UK on 13 October, and will therefore be unable to attend the ceremony. However, I am sure it will be covered in one of your future messages or newsletters, and I look forward to reading about what I missed experiencing in person!
My best wishes for the continued good work of Thrombosis UK, and thank you once more for the very gratifying award.
Maritime Transport Ltd
In recognition of Maritime Transport Limited's continuing and amazing fundraising support for Thrombosis UK and in raising awareness of this common, but too often little understood condition. Maritime Transport have held Charity Golf Days in 2015 and 2016.
Katie Mallinson accepting award
In recognition of Katie Mallinson and Scriba UK's amazing fundraising support for Thrombosis UK since 2014. Events started out with a charity day at Soccer City, Huddersfield in August 2014, following which was the amazing '3 thanks Campaign' which swept across social media in 2015 and they are holding a sell-out Drink and Think Event on 21st October 2016 the theme for which is beer, bubbles, beef and brain-bending!
Mr Stephen Black accepting award
The 'Patient Choice Award' - seeks nominations from patients and carers for healthcare individuals or teams who have gone over and beyond their employed role to provide exemplary care and management of thrombosis.
The patient award winner for today is Mr Stephen Black.
Until 2014, Stephen was a Consultant Vascular Surgeon and honorary senior lecturer at St George's Hospital and Medical School. At St George's Stephen he led the establishment of a programme for deep venous intervention which grew to be one of the largest in Europe. In 2012 he was awarded the Fellowship of the European Board of Vascular Surgery and in 2014 he moved to Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.
Currently Stephen is a programme director for the Charing Cross Venous Meeting and is on the organising committee of the European Venous Forum Hand on Workshops. He is also on the organising committee and is an examiner for the Fellowship of the European Board of Surgery.
Stephen's work has been at the forefront of pioneering research. His innovative work has lead to far greater understanding and knowledge on the possible and effective opportunities to implant vascular stents on patients who have suffered thrombotic events. Although still a new therapy for this area of health, Stephen has already provided vascular stents to hundreds of thrombotic patients who were suitable for this procedure. His work has not only brought relief from the symptoms caused by post thrombotic syndrome, a complication of DVT, but also hope.
Due to his work, this treatment is beginning to be replicated across the UK although his team at Guys and St Thomas’ remain the country's innovators and experts in this field.
Here are comments from just a few of the people who have nominated him.
"Things would have been so different if clot removal had been available or even mentioned at the local hospital, in Jan 14. To have May Thurner Syndrome and Post Thrombotic Syndrome treatment available now and so successfully by such caring experts at Guy's and St Thomas is nothing short of miraculous."
"So grateful for this pioneering work. Mr Black and his Team have our vote. Sat for four hours (with walks in between!) watching my son in two tennis finals on Sunday and witness him running both pain-free and swelling-free, made me so happy. So lucky. MBE at least."
"The pioneering stuff he's doing for people with post thrombotic syndrome, which can be so debilitating. Its great that somebody offers the possibility of getting your life back."
"His department's treatment of clots offer a hugely increased chance for full recovery (eg mechanical removal of clot). This needs to be the treatment everywhere!"
Helen Williams accepting award
Helen Williams is many things – the Clinical lead for AF at South London Academic Health Science Network, A Clinical Associate for cardiovascular Disease in NHS Southwark CCG, The Cardiovascular Lead for NHS Lambeth CCG and a Consultant Pharmacists for Cardiovascular Disease across South London.
Her roles involve her working for a number of NHS organisations across the South London sector to develop and implement local CV prescribing guidance, while assisting in service redesign to maximise patient outcomes, supporting pharmacist CV led clinics in primary and secondary care, promoting high quality and cost effective prescribing for cardiac and stroke patients across South London, managing the entry of new CV drugs across the health economy.
Exhausted just listening – well, in short, Helen Williams works "to improve prescribing for people with or at risk of cardiovascular disease
As we can, to some extent imagine, Helen faces multiple challenges – from budget restrictions, to variable access, inequality of services, update in educational needs, greater awareness... But Helen has never let any of this become a barrier. Her continued perseverance to work across services, communities, organisations and areas, has enabled Helen to achieve, the launch of a Pan London Consensus Statement on Anticoagulation Management, and now leading to the development of patient, clinician and commissioner tools intended to implement to support a quality standard in anticoagulation services that delivers 'excellence in anticoagulation care'
Helen's leadership in this work has brought together patients, clinicians from multiple health fields, policy makers, commissioners and charities, to ensure informed decision making, patient care, outcomes and experience, lie at the heart of effective anticoagulation services. This work is now being looked at nationally for local adoption.
Helen's leadership is ensuring that 'Excellence in Anticoagulation Care' is the only level of care commissioned, accepted and delivered.