A Doncaster nursing assistant has reached the final five in a prestigious national award, after beating competition from more than 8,000 entries.
Margaret Cameron, from Warmsworth, who works for Community Memory Therapy Services providing day care for people with dementia, is on a shortlist of just a handful of nursing staff from across the country bidding to be named the nation’s number one.
She was nominated for the prestigious Health Hero Awards honour by her manager, team leader Mary Beardsley.
The recognition for Margaret, who will celebrate her 70th birthday next year, comes after she has worked in Community Memory Therapy Services since 1999.
She transports patients in a minibus and takes them to day centres, where she and her colleagues provide cognitive stimulation therapy and other activities such as quizzes, board games, art, hand massage and beauty treatments.
She is described by Mary as ‘innovative and forward thinking’ and her work doesn’t stop when she clocks off - Margaret is always looking for the next idea to improve care for her patients and spends a lot of her weekends scouring car boot sales and antique shops for reminiscence materials to stimulate the memories of her patients.
She added: “Margaret is vibrant and positive and always has the patients’ interests at heart. Even though they have dementia, when Margaret is on holiday they ask when she will be back.
“We have lots of positive feedback from carers, patients, student nurses and any new staff who work alongside Margaret. She is an inspiration to them.
“Her attitude towards patients and carers shows respect, empathy and dedication at all times.”
Margaret said: “I was shocked but very flattered to be nominated and to get into the last five, but this is really an award for the whole team, not just for me.
“Our patients get a lot of satisfaction and stimulation from the activities.”
The overall winner will be announced in London on June 13.