From ensuring patients were able to mark Remembrance Sunday to sourcing a much-wanted bacon and egg sandwich – there’s no lengths Clinical Support Worker Paul Foster won’t go to on Ward 9 of Walsall Manor Hospital.
Paul, who has worked for Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust for 17 years, is a West Midlands regional winner who is now among the national finalists in the 2019 Our Health Heroes awards. He has been nominated for his exceptionally high standards of care and consideration for patients and has beaten more than 800 to be on the final shortlist of 34 in eight categories for the national accolade.
The father-of-three’s colleagues describe him as “someone who always goes above and beyond, coming in on his days off to help decorate the ward and help our events.”
On Remembrance Sunday last year, Paul arrived early for his shift to ensure all his elderly gentleman patients were ready to watch the 11am service parade.
“We spent time looking back over history; there were a couple of patients who’d been in the RAF, another who had been in the Navy,” explained Paul. “This was an important moment for them and being in hospital shouldn’t mean they have to miss out.”
On another occasion Paul went to buy a bacon and egg sandwich as it was the only food a poorly patient fancied and Paul wanted to get him on the road to recovery and focused on being back home.
“It’s important to me to have that connection with our patients. Many are frightened and nervous and if we can ease those worries it’s a great feeling.
“When I realised that people would now be voting for me nationally I didn’t know what to think. It’s all just so overwhelming really.”
In his spare time Paul, aged 40, enjoys running and has completed a number of 10k runs.
People can vote for Paul via the Skills for Health website www.skillsforhealth.org.uk/ohh-2019.
Organised by Skills for Health and headline sponsor Health Education England, Our Health Heroes has been celebrating unsung healthcare heroes from across the UK since 2016.
John Rogers, Skills for Health Chief Executive, said: “It’s been amazing to read through some of the nomination forms; there are some truly incredible people working within our healthcare sector who deserve to be recognised for their achievements and dedication.”