Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year award for Sixmilecross woman

Thursday, 15 June 2017

Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year award for Sixmilecross woman thumbnailSixmilecross woman, Siobhan Rogan, centre, was awarded the RCN Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year (RCN) Award 2017

SIOBHAN Rogan, from Sixmilecross, has won the RCN Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year Award 2017. She was presented with the award at a special ceremony held at the Culloden Hotel, Holywood.

Siobhan, who works in the Southern Trust, was nominated for her leading role in establishing Northern Ireland's first community-based fully integrated child and adolescent mental health service (CAMHS) for young people with intellectual disability.

These young people have high rates of complex mental health and behavioural difficulties and are often unable to access comprehensive, specialist services. Siobhan established specialist teams within CAMHS providing early intervention and assessment.

Her nominator describes Siobhan as "an outstanding leader and brilliant colleague who is changing the face of services for children with intellectual disability in Northern Ireland", while the judging panel was impressed by her emphasis on the rights of the child and how she promotes services locally so that children do not have to travel outside Northern Ireland.

A parent of one child said: "The help we got here has not only saved his life, it has saved my life".

Runner-up on the evening was Fiona Barnes. A nurse practitioner in the South Eastern Trust, Fiona has been instrumental in the development of innovative services for patients with borderline personality disorders.


Shauneen Breen, also from Sixmilecross, was runner-up in the Patient's Choice Award, sponsored by the Patient and Client Council. Shauneen works in the coronary care unit at the South West Acute Hospital. She was nominated for the care of a patient who was admitted following a severe myocardial infarction, the family having been told that she had only two hours to live. 

The family describe how Shauneen encouraged and supported the patient in her recovery, recognising the importance of high quality personal care to the patient's self-esteem and overall condition. They say: "We feel it is testament to the nursing care provided by Shauneen that we enjoyed the care of our loving mother for a further 19 months."

The judging panel commended Shauneen for her strong focus on patient care and equality.

Sarah Penney, from Aughnacloy, won the Learning in Practice Award, sponsored by the Open University. Sarah is a research and teaching fellow at Ulster University and was nominated for her leadership of the 'My Home Life' programme, which provides support to care home managers to improve the quality of life for patients and residents.


'My Home Life' has enhanced understanding of the need to maintain the dignity and individual identity of patients with end-stage dementia, as well as directly involving patients in decisions about their care. Links have been established with local schools and voluntary organisations to promote inter-generational contact. The judging panel was impressed by Sarah's enthusiasm and how she inspires others to be the best they can be.

 An award to celebrate outstanding achievement in nursing, sponsored by the Northern Ireland Practice and Education Council (NIPEC), was presented to Professor Tanya McCance for her exceptional contribution to nursing research and, in particular, person-centred nursing practice.

Commenting on the Awards, RCN Northern Ireland director, Janice Smyth, said:  "Siobhan Rogan is working with some of the most vulnerable children in our society and has made a huge improvement in how they are treated and cared for. This service provides innovative early intervention to promote better long-term outcomes.

 "This is the 21st year of the Northern Ireland Nurse of the Year Awards which have highlighted some of the best examples of nursing practice. Despite the challenges nursing and the wider health service continue to face, it is important to recognise and value the excellent care nurses provide to the people of Northern Ireland.

"Nurses are constantly developing their practice and reforming and modernising services to meet the needs of patients. I am extremely encouraged by the excellence and innovation shown by our finalists who are a credit to the nursing profession."


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