Lancashire nurse shortlisted for RCNI awards

Tracey Hartley-Smith has been shortlisted for an RCNI award.
Tracey Hartley-Smith has been shortlisted for an RCNI award.

A member of staff with Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust has been shortlisted for a prestigious national award for her pioneering work with children with learning disabilities and autism in Lancashire.

Tracey Hartley-Smith, Integrated Service Leader in the Learning Disability and Complex Needs Team at Lancashire Care, is one of five finalists in the Learning Disability Nursing Award category of the Royal College of Nursing Institute’s (RCNi) Nurse Awards 2018.

Tracey, who is from Chorley, recognised a gap in service for children with learning disabilities and autism in North Lancashire and developed a service that has led to positive outcomes for families and recognition from stakeholders.

Sponsored by NHS England, the Learning Disability Nursing Award recognises and celebrates individual learning disability nurses or teams who have used their initiative, insight and skills to make a real difference to the health, wellbeing and social inclusion of people with learning disabilities.

Tracey Hartley-Smith, Integrated Service Leader in the Learning Disability and Complex Needs Team at Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“I’m thrilled to have got this far in the RCNI Nurse Awards 2018. What an honour! Previously, there was no specialist nursing service for children with learning disabilities and autism in North Lancashire and so we developed a nurse-led multi-disciplinary service that is now fully established. This has led to positive outcomes for families and received widespread recognition. The service is working hard to ensure that there is sufficient capacity locally to meet the needs of children and young people now and in the future.”

Following on from the success of this work, Tracey is now working with other NHS organisations and local commissioners to develop an Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnostic pathway, which is planned for commencement later in the year. As a finalist, Tracey will attend the awards on Wednesday 4 July at the Westminster Park Plaza Hotel in London where the winner will be announced.

Now in their 31st year, the RCNi Nurse Awards celebrate the very best in nursing care. Covering a wide range of specialties such as learning disability nursing, child health, cancer nursing, mental health nursing and nursing older people, the awards are widely regarded as the highest accolade for nurses in the UK.