North Manchester General Hospital needle-free flu vaccine pilot shortlisted for national BMJ award

Flu nasal spray crop
North Manchester General Hospital needle-free flu vaccine pilot shortlisted for national BMJ award
02 March 2017

A CLINICAL team based at North Manchester General Hospital have been shortlisted for a prestigious national British Medical Journal (BMJ) award.

The team which comprises Dr Rachel Isba, consultant in paediatric public health medicine; Dianne Cook, lead advanced paediatric nurse practitioner in paediatric emergency medicine; Kate Hilditch, senior pharmacist infectious diseases and Adelle Lees and Sue Higgins, paediatric nursing sisters in the paediatric emergency medicine department, formed a ‘flu vaccination for children’ team and have been shortlisted in the ‘Prevention team of the year’ category.

Last year they implemented a new innovative public health initiative at North Manchester General Hospital in the fight against ‘flu.  Pre-school children and older children in at risk groups who attended the paediatric emergency department at the hospital were offered a needle-free ‘flu vaccine in the form of a nasal spray which was squirted up the children’s noses. 

The pilot, organised by Dr Rachel Isba was believed to be the first of its kind in the country and was organised in conjunction with colleagues in Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership (GMHSCP).

The BMJ awards are the UK’s leading medical awards which recognise and celebrate inspirational work of healthcare teams across the country.  Around 350 entries were received for the awards and these were whittled down to 60 shortlisted entries.

The overall winner of the award will be announced at a ceremony in London on 4 May.

Dr Rachel Isba said: “The shortlisting is recognition of the fantastic work that my team did, trying something that had never been done in England, delivering it with enthusiasm and energy, in the setting of a very busy emergency department.  We collectively learnt a lot from the experience and are committed to sharing what we learned with colleagues so that other departments can adapt/adopt in the future.

“I think that the success of this project and being shortlisted for this award show that public health approaches to improving child health can be implemented in acute settings such as the children’s emergency department.”

Professor Matt Makin, medical director at North Manchester General Hospital, said: “The team’s shortlisting for this BMJ award is great news and a brilliant example of how we are working across The Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust to improve the health and wellbeing of local children."

Pictured receiving his needle free flu vaccine is two year old Hassan Mohammed with dad Wasfi Mohammed, Adelle Lees, sister in paediatric emergency department; Kate Hilditch, senior pharmacist; John Cleland, F2 doctor and Dr Rachel Isba.